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Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said on Friday that he plans to visit Cuban leader Fidel Castro in January 2007.

The president said he will travel to Cubato visit Castro after his trip to Nicaragua, where he will take part in Daniel Ortega's presidential swearing in ceremony on Jan. 10.

He said he had not spoken with Castro recently.

Castro has been seriously ill for quite some time in the latter half of2006, and he transferred power to Raul Castro, the Defense Minister, on Aug. 1.

On Friday, the Cuban leader was absent from the traditional year-ending session of the country's National Assembly.

The 80-year-old president attended Lula's presidential ceremony on Jan. 1, 2003. They have been friends since long before Lula took office as President for the first time. Lula will launch his second term in the position on Jan. 1 next year.

Source: Xinhua


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