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Fidel Castro makes first public appearance in months

By Amy R. Connolly
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Fidel Castro makes first public appearance in months
Fidel Castro pictured in Vancouver in December 1995, listing reasons why he's upset with U.S. economic sanctions against his country, and taking the long way home from an Asian trade mission by flying east across Canada and then south over the Atlantic back to Cuba. Friday, Castro, now 88, made his first public appearance in three months, visiting 19 cheese masters at the Food Industry Ministry. File photo by H. Ruckemann/UPI | License Photo

HAVANA, July 4 (UPI) -- Former Cuban President Fidel Castro made his first public appearance in three months Friday, visiting a group of cheese masters to discuss issues that included climate change and war, official media reported Saturday.

Castro, 88, was shown in photographs in the Communist Party's official newspaper, Granma, seated in an auditorium at the country's Food Industry Research Institute to visit 19 cheese masters for four hours. Granma said Castro also addressed cheese production levels and grades. He wore a signature windbreaker, plaid shirt and gray pants.

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The last time Castro was seen in public was February, when he was photographed speaking with the head of the Federation of University Students. He officially stepped down in 2008, handing the reigns to his brother Raul, 84.

The elder Castro's public appearance comes as the United States and Cuba work to restore diplomatic ties after 54 years.

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