Fidel Castro Resigns

Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz (born August 13, 1926) is a Cuban politician, one of the primary leaders of the Cuban Revolution, the Prime Minister of Cuba from February 1959 to December 1976, and then the President of the Council of State of Cuba until his resignation from the office in February 2008. He is currently the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba.

I'm really happy to reach 80. I never expected it, not least having a neighbor - the greatest power in the world - trying to kill me every day.”

— Fidel Castro

In a letter dated February 18, 2008, Castro announced that he would not accept the positions of president and commander in chief at the February 24, 2008 National Assembly meetings, saying "I will not aspire nor accept—I repeat I will not aspire or accept—the post of President of the Council of State and Commander in Chief," effectively announcing his retirement from official public life. The letter was published online by the official Communist Party newspaper Granma. In it, Castro stated that his health was a primary reason for his decision, stating that "It would betray my conscience to take up a responsibility that requires mobility and total devotion, that I am not in a physical condition to offer".