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Cuban Blog Says Fidel Castro Made Public Appearance

Former Cuban President Fidel Castro is reported to have made his first known public appearance since becoming ill four years ago, by visiting a Havana scientific facility.

Photographs taken with a cell phone camera and posted on a pro-government blog showed the 83-year-old Mr. Castro smiling and talking with people at the National Center of Scientific Investigations on Wednesday. He was wearing sports clothing.

The blogger, Rosa C. Baez, wrote that Mr. Castro was spotted blowing kisses to the group that waited for an opportunity to see him. She wrote that he was thin but looked good and that, according to someone present, he was "very good mentally." The information appears on the website "Bloggers and Correspondents of the Revolution."

There was no official confirmation from the Cuban government, and the photographs were not published on the websites of state-run media like the communist party newspaper, Granma.

Mr. Castro has been seen only in occasional photographs and videos since undergoing emergency intestinal surgery in 2006 and ceding power, first temporarily, then permanently, to his now 79-year-old brother, Raul. Details of Fidel Castro's health are considered a state secret.

The 83-year-old former president publishes his thoughts on world events in frequent opinion pieces written for the state-run media.

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