Fidel Castro turns 87 behind closed doors

Clock ticks on revolutionary generation's time in power

8/13/2013
ASSOCIATED PRESS
Cuba-Castro-Maduro

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro, right, speaks with Cuba's former President Fidel Castro during their meetin at Havana, Cuba, on July 27.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro, right, speaks with Cuba's former President Fidel Castro during their meetin at Havana, Cuba, on July 27.
Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro, right, speaks with Cuba's former President Fidel Castro during their meetin at Havana, Cuba, on July 27.

HAVANA  — Fidel Castro is marking his 87th birthday behind closed doors, with tributes in official media serving as a reminder of his outsize influence on Cuban history.

The date also underscores that the clock is ticking on his generation’s grip on power, with Cubans increasingly obliged to contemplate a post-Castro future.

Havana mechanic Dayren Silva said today the occasionally released photos and videos of the retired leader make him realize that “the calendar is irreversible.”

Raul Castro has been in power since a near-fatal illness forced Fidel to step aside in 2006.

He says his current term ending in 2018 will be his last, concluding nearly six decades of rule by the brothers.

In February Raul Castro named Miguel Diaz-Canel, 53, as his chief deputy and heir apparent.