HAVANA The Cuban Communist Party on Tuesday named a 15-member Political Bureau that will steer the country through the next five years as it overhauls the economy and fine-tunes the one-party political system.
Raul Castro, as first secretary, heads the body which also includes 11 other members from the previous political bureau and three new members:
* Jose Machado Ventura, 80, first vice president of the Council of State and a medical doctor who has been at Raul Castro's side since the revolution began, was named party second secretary.
Five generals retained their seats:
* Defense Minister Julio Casas Regueiro, 75.
* Interior Minister Abelardo Colome Ibarra, 71.
* First Deputy Defense Minister Leopoldo Cintras Frias, 69.
* Deputy Defense Minister Ramon Espinosa Martin, 72.
* Alvaro Lopez Miera, 62, head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Other members who maintained their seats:
* Ricardo Alarcon de Quesada, 73, president of the National Assembly.
* Juan Esteban Lazo Hernandez, 66, long-time party ideologue and former provincial party leader.
* Ramiro Valdes Menendez, 78, who fought in the revolution and has held numerous positions ever since, including interior minister.
* Salvador Valdes Mesa, 62, head of the official trade union federation and long-time party functionary.
* Miguel Mario Diaz Canel Bermudez, 51, minister of higher education.
The new members are:
* Marino Murillo, 50, former economy minister who was recently promoted to lead implementation of economic reforms.
* Adel Izquierdo Rodriguez, 65, economy minister, a military officer and close aid to Raul Castro when he was defense minister.
* Mercedes Lopez Acea, first secretary of the party in Havana.
(Reporting by Marc Frank; editing by Mohammad Zargham)