The following is an excerpt from Ezra Fieser | March 11, 2018 | Bloomberg.com |
The Castro family is finally relinquishing the presidency in Cuba. Six decades of rule by first Fidel and then Raul is coming to an end as the Communist government turns to a younger generation to lead the island through its most serious economic challenge since the aftermath of the fall of the Soviet Union.
The nation of 11 million Sunday is voting in one-party elections for pre-selected ruling party candidates to fill the 600-plus National Assembly seats. In turn, assembly members will choose a replacement for President Raul Castro, 86, who is retiring April 19. All signs point to the assembly picking Miguel Diaz-Canel, a 57-year-old engineer and current first vice president.
“This is important symbolically because it’s the passing of the baton from the historic figures led by the Castros to the next generation,” said Ted Piccone, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington. “The big caveat is that it will be gradual change because Raul will still be secretary of the Communist party.”
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