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Russian president will not attend Fidel Castro's funeral

November 28, 2016, 13:45 UTC+3
Russian President Vladimir Putin will not go to Cuba to attend the funeral as he will be busy with preparation of his state-of-the-nation address
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© AP Photo/Esteban Felix

MOSCOW, November 28. /TASS/. The speaker of Russia’s State Duma, the lower house of parliament, Vyacheslav Volodin, will head Russia’s delegation at the funeral of Fidel Castro, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday.

"Upon the order of the president, Duma Speaker Volodin will head Russia’s delegation at the funeral of Fidel (Castro)," Peskov said. "This night he will go to Cuba."

The delegation will also include chairman of the Russian-Cuban intergovernmental commission and Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, and representatives of the Foreign Ministry and parliamentary factions, Peskov said.

"The delegation will be rather representative," he said. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin, however, will not go to Cuba to attend the funeral as he will be busy with preparation of his state-of-the-nation address, Peskov said on Monday, when asked why the Russian delegation will be led by speaker of the Russian State Duma.

"Vladimir Putin has a rather busy agenda, he is getting prepared for his state-of-the-nation address, which is one of the key items on the president’s working schedule for the year fixed in legislation," Peskov explained, adding that this is why "Russia will be represented [at Castro’s funeral] at the high but not top level."

Fidel Castro died on November 25 at the age of 90. Fidel Castro’s body was cremated on Saturday in accordance with his wish. A nine-day mourning has been announced throughout the country.

Starting from November 30, Castro’s ashes will go on a four-day procession from Havana to the southeastern city of Santiago de Cuba.

Castro's ashes will be interred at the Santa Ifigenia cemetery in the city of Santiago de Cuba, known as the cradle of the Cuban Revolution, at 7 a.m. local time on December 4. Besides, on November 28 and on December 4 two simultaneous 21-gun salutes will fire in Havana and Santiago de Cuba.

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