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Cuba gives Chavez 21-gun salute

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

The blast of cannons echoed through Havana Friday as Cuba honored Hugo Chavez with a 21-gun salute on the day of his funeral in Venezuela.

Six cannons roared from La Cabana, a colonial-era fortress on the city's waterfront. Flags flew at half-mast on the last of three days of mourning declared for the death of Chavez on Tuesday.

Soldiers from both countries laid a wreath at the foot of a large photo of Chavez, the ideological soulmate of the Castro brothers and Cuba's benefactor through hefty exports of oil on favorable payment terms.

Raul Castro traveled to Caracas for Chavez's state funeral on Friday. Thousands of Cubans turned out Thursday in rallies in memory of Chavez.

Chavez's death has many Cubans worried that the hard times of the 1990s, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, its chief source of aid at the time, might be coming back.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130308/cuba-gives-chavez-21-gun-salute