Castro says will remain head of Cuba’s Communist Party until 2021

Havana (AFP) – Cuba’s Raul Castro — who on Thursday stepped down, ceding the presidency to Miguel Diaz-Canel in a historic handover — said he would remain head of the island’s all-powerful Communist Party until 2021.

“My second and final mandate (as party head) will expire in 2021,” the 86-year-old told delegates at the National Assembly. “From then on, I will be soldier alongside the people, defending the revolution.”