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Cuba Marks 45th Anniversary of US Defeat at Bay of Pigs

Cuba has celebrated the 45th anniversary of the defeat of a CIA-backed invasion force at the Bay of Pigs.

Cuban President Fidel Castro attended an event in Havana Wednesday to salute veterans of the fighting. He was quoted as saying Cuba faced up to the strongest superpower on Earth and is still on its feet.

On April 17, 1961, some 1500 CIA-trained Cuban exiles landed on Cuba's southern coast in hopes of sparking an uprising to force President Castro from power. Mr. Castro was warned of the pending invasion and had ample time to prepare his forces.

Then U.S.-President John F. Kennedy did not provide air support to the exiles, who were defeated in three days.

Cuba's celebrations were held two days after former members of the invading force, known as Brigade 2506, gathered at the Bay of Pigs Memorial in Miami's Little Havana area to recite the names of the 150 Cuban exiles killed during the ill-fated landing.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.