Cuba marks Fidel Castro's 85th birthday in Havana

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Nearly two dozen singers and musicians from nine Latin American nations gathered to honour Fidel Castro with a happy-birthday concert on Friday on the eve of the former leader's 85th birthday.  

Dubbed the "Serenade to Fidelity," the spectacle was planned as a "homage to the life of a man, of a people, of a nation and of a revolution," the Communist Party newspaper Granma said.

Dignitaries from other countries were expected and the event's planner promised there would be surprise visitors, but it was not known whether Castro himself would attend. 

Castro has been a prolific writer of newspaper columns and books in recent years, including autobiographical accounts of the events that led him to take power in a 1959 revolution.

Castro has published just one opinion column since late May, though it's not unusual or unprecedented for his pen to go silent for extended periods.... 

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