Raul Castro's staunch ally sworn in as Cuban President

Angel Rodriguez Negron fills his gasoline container at a gas station while others line up behind him after a general power outage in San Juan Puerto Rico Wednesday

Cuban President Raul Castro (left) waves next to First Vice-President Miguel Diaz-Canel (center) during a National Assembly session that will select Cuba's Council of State ahead of the naming of a new president, in Havana on April 18, 2018.

"The mandate given by the people to this legislature is to continue the Cuban revolution at this crucial historic moment, which will be marked by what we must do to implement the economic model" put in place by Castro, he said.

In remarks following the National Assembly's announcement, Diaz-Canel acknowledged that Raul Castro would remain as the head of the armed forces, which runs much of the Cuban economy and tourism industry.

Ramiro Valdes, 85, was proposed as one of the vice presidents in a significant move, thereby keeping in the future government a historical leader who fought in the liberation war along with the Castro brothers.

Diaz-Canel, a former electrical engineer, Education Minister and Vice President, replaces the 86-year-old Raul Castro who has held the position since 2008.

And he noted he would have Raul Castro as a guide - a nod to those veterans of the revolution with concerns that their socialist legacy may be buried by the tide of reform.

Diaz-Canel, who some say bears a passing resemblance to American actor Richard Gere, is a fan of The Beatles whose penchant for wearing jeans has set him apart in Havana's corridors of power.

The silver-haired Diaz-Canel, 57 - a top Communist Party figure who has served as first vice president since 2013 - will become the island's first leader born after the 1959 revolution, and the first in 60 years who is not named Castro.

Although Castro was elected a lawmaker, he won't be part of the Council of State.

Members of the National Assembly are expected to vote on this slate of candidates in a secret ballot later Wednesday and announce the results Thursday.

"The significance of this event can not be overstated". Ultimately, it "could have a profound impact on the direction of the country".

Legislators erupted in applause Wednesday morning as Castro entered the hall in a dark suit, accompanied by Miguel Diaz-Canel, his expected successor.

The National Assembly is meeting at a time when Cuba faces an array of challenges from a limping economy, a dismal sugar harvest, and the near collapse of its Venezuelan benefactor to a deteriorating relationship with the United States and a restive younger population that wants a better quality of life and more opportunities. Now the expansion of the private sector is on pause awaiting new regulations.



Latest news

National parks raising entrance fees: Increases to go toward infrastructure, maintenance
Revenue from entrance fees remains in the National Park Service and helps ensure a quality experience for all who visit. National Park Service The campground at Boulder Beach in Lake Mead National Recreation Area has been renovated.

Sunny Skies With Cool Temperatures For Thursday
There will be a few clouds, but the day as a whole looks pretty bright and the winds won't be as strong. We should get sunnier skies as the next week moves along with warmer temperatures expected.

Learn to Code … with a Mobile App?
After all, you might be slightly interested in heading down this path, but need a more bite-sized way to get started. Animations I - Drawing shapes using the popular D3 library, defining functions, callback functions, and animations.

Large Volume Movers Patterson-UTI Energy, Inc.'s (PTEN)
The stock of Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP) has "Equal-Weight" rating given on Tuesday, October 31 by Morgan Stanley. Analyzing the overall image of stock during recent quarter then we found that stock performance is trading down -15.04%.

Online Sports Betting Market Growth
Benefits With the market high, sports betting is an activity that receives a high level of support from online betting companies. More betters are opting to forego the long lines at the cashier's counter and the unavailability of their favorite machines.

Other news