Cuban President attends burial ceremony of sibling

Indo Asian News Service

Havana, March 29 (IANS) Cuban President Raul Castro has attended the burial ceremony of his youngest sister Agustina Castro who died at the age of 78 due to complications from a recent surgery.

Castro along with his sister Emma attended on Tuesday the "intimate ceremony" in the family state of Biran, about 800 km from here, Xinhua news agency reported.

Castro paid tribute to the ashes of his sister who died on Sunday and had always kept a low profile in the island.

Her ashes were placed in a crypt alongside those of the family's eldest siblings Ramon and Angelita, as well as her parents Lina Ruz and Angel Castro.

Agustina was the youngest of the seven siblings that included former Cuban President Fidel Castro.

Only Fidel's ashes are not in the family burial site. They were placed at the Santa Ifigenia cemetery in Santiago de Cuba next to those of Cuban independence hero Jose Marti.

Fidel died in November at the age of 90 after severe illness forced him away from power.

Raul, who succeeded his brother in 2006 as the Cuban President, will turn 86 in June and hand over power next February.