Fidel Castro's son says father is fine, amid rumors

Pope Benedict XVI meets with former Cuban President

Pope Benedict XVI meets with former Cuban President Fidel Castro (left) at the Vatican embassy in Havana, Cuba. (March 29, 2012) (Credit: Getty Images)

One of Fidel Castro's sons reportedly says his father is in good shape despite a long public silence that has again fueled speculation about the 86-year-old former president's health.

A journalist for the state-run newspaper Venceremos quotes Alex Castro as saying "the comandante" is going about daily life as normal, reading and exercising.

Arlin Alberty Loforte posted the quote Friday on her blog from the eastern city of Guantanamo, where she met with Alex Castro the previous evening at an exhibit of his photographs of the retired leader.

Rumors of Fidel Castro's purportedly declining health surfaced anew this week after he did not publicly congratulate Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on his re-election. He has not been seen in public since late March.

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