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  Miguel Diaz-Canel, Cuba’s new No. 2, respected as smart and personable
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Last EditedRBH  Feb 25, 2013 07:01pm
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News DateTuesday, February 26, 2013 01:00:00 AM UTC0:0
Description Miguel Diaz-Canel, who stands to become Cuba’s first post-Castro ruler, is respected as a smart manager and personable communicator who rode a bike on his rounds when he headed the Communist Party in the province of Villa Clara.

Diaz-Canel toed the revolutionary line and was “something of an ideologue, but he was smart and you could talk to him,” said one of two Cuban journalists in Miami who knew the now 52-year-old in the 1990s and early 2000s.

“He won the respect of the people in the province” of Villa Clara, said the other. Both asked for anonymity because of their current jobs. Diaz-Canel was selected Sunday as first vice president of the Council of State, making him No. 2 in the government headed by Raúl Castro, who announced at the same time that he would leave power in 2018.

Cuban officials singled out as possible generational successors to the Castros have a history of getting fired — witness former Foreign Ministers Roberto Robaina and Felipe Perez Roque and former Vice President Carlos Lage.
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