Raul Castro says will resign as head of Cuba’s Communist Party, ending era of formal leadership by Castro brothers

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Raul Castro, first secretary of the Communist Party and former president, attends the VIII Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba’s opening session, at the Convention Palace in Havana, Cuba, Friday, April 16, 2021. (Ariel Ley Royero/ACN via AP)

HAVANA (AP) — Raul Castro said Friday he is resigning as head of Cuba’s Communist Party, ending an era of formal leadership by he and his brother Fidel Castro that began with the 1959 revolution.

Castro made the announcement Friday in a speech at the opening of the Eighth congress of the ruling party, the only one allowed on the island.

Castro didn’t say who he would endorse as his successor as first secretary-general of the Communist Party, but he previously has indicated that he favors yielding control to Miguel Diaz-Canel, who succeeded him as president in 2018.

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