Fidel Castro Makes First Public Appearance in Nine Months

The former leader of Cuba attends the opening of an art studio

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Sven Creutzmann / Mambo Photo / Getty Images

Fidel Castro, Cuba's former President and revolutionary leader, looks at the camera during a rare public appearance to attend the inauguration of an art gallery on January 8, 2014 in Havana, Cuba.

Former President of Cuba Fidel Castro made a rare public appearance to attend the opening of an art studio in Cuba’s capital on Wednesday, the Associated Press reports.

Cuban newspapers, broadcasts and websites all publicized a photo Thursday of  Castro at the event. The photo shows the back of the former leader’s head as he points to a statue. He last appeared in public on April 9, 2013 when he attended the inauguration of a school in Havana. Video footage of the event showed the former leader’s face.

Castro, 87, led Cuba for 48 years before he fell ill in July 2006. His brother Raul took over as president in January 2008.