Russian Church honours Fidel Castro, his brother

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Moscow, Oct 20 (UNI) Cuban leader Fidel Castro and his brother Raul Castro have been honoured by the Russian Orthodox Church for their contributions to the construction of the first Russian Orthodox Cathedral in Cuba.

The awards were handed over by Russian Church's top foreign relations official, Metropolitan Kirill, who attended a ceremony marking the Day of Russia in Cuba yesterday.

The new Our Lady of Kazan cathedral, topped by five golden domes, opened yesterday in the historic centre of the Cuban capital of Havana four years after construction work was approved by then President Fidel Castro.

''This is a monument to Russian-Cuban friendship and all the efforts that have preserved our relations, including during the most difficult moments of the Cold War,'' RIA Novosti news agency reported quoting Metropolitan Kirill at the opening of the Church.

The consecration ceremony was part of activities in Cuba featuring concerts by Russian musicians as well as Russian films and documentaries.

UNI XC RJ HT1628

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