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No gifts from empire, Fidel tells Obama

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Cuban President Raul Castro, right,grabbed Obama’s arm by the wrist and hoisted it up alongside his own, March 21, 2016, in Havana, Cuba.

Not long after US President Barack Obama paid a historic visit to Cuba, Fidel Castro says the Caribbean Sea nation can stand on its own feet and doesn’t need any “gifts from the empire.”

Castro made his first public reaction to the visit in a Tuesday column published by Granma, the official newspaper of Cuba’s communist party, in which he suggested “Brother Obama” to “think and not try to theorize about Cuban politics.”

“We are capable of producing the food and material wealth we need with the labor and the intelligence of our people. We don’t need any gifts from the empire,” noted the leader of the 1959 Cuban Revolution, denouncing the American President’s pro-democracy remarks as “syrupy.”

When Obama was 10

On March 20, Obama became the first sitting US president to travel to the island nation in nearly 90 years.

Obama did not meet with Fidel in his three-day visit, during which he said the Cuban “voters should be able to choose their governments in free and democratic elections.”

“Obama gave a speech in which he used the most syrupy words,” Fidel wrote. “He doesn’t mention that racial discrimination was erased by the Revolution, that retirement benefits and salaries for all Cubans were decreed before Mr. Barack Obama was 10 years old,” he wrote.

In December 2014, Obama announced normalization of ties with Cuba, which was faced with pressure from the Republicans.

The United States broke off diplomatic relations with Cuba in 1961 and placed an official embargo against the country in 1962.

The two countries became ideological foes soon after the 1959 revolution that brought Fidel Castro to power and their ties remained hostile even after the end of the Cold War.

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