Cuba’s Communist Party elected a new leader on Monday, putting an end to the Castro era that’s ruled the island nation since its 1959 revolution.
President Miguel Diaz-Canel will step in for Raul Castro, the brother of revolutionary leader, Fidel Castro.
Diaz-Canel said Castro will still be consulted on strategic decisions.
"To an army general, Raul as he’s known, on behalf of my colleagues and the Cuban people, thank you for the example set, for the drive, the strength and the trust… Your support was very important throughout these years of learning and formation, which has allowed us today to assume the responsibilities that yourself and Fidel have made historic."
Fidel and Raul Castro ruled Cuba for six decades, after leading a Communist revolution in 1959.
Diaz-Canel now assumes the highest position in government as first party secretary.
Some Havana residents applauded the handover, saying Diaz-Canel represented a younger generation.
Others doubted much would change.
"The only thing that is going to happen is that the Castros are gone but for me, it will be the same thing."
Diaz-Canel has emphasized continuity of the country’s one-party socialist system, amid pressure to undertake economic reforms.