Granma’s first front page, dated October 4, 1965. The previous day, Comandante en Jefe Fidel Castro had presented the members of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba; read Che’s letter of farewell; and announced the foundation of the newspaper Granma. Photo: Granma

Excerpts from President Díaz-Canel’s interview with journalist Patricia Villegas, director of the multi-national broadcaster teleSUR:

“The issue of the leading role of the Communist Party in our society, which we do not renounce, and which is supported by the majority of the people, is related to fundamental, historical motivations, and at times this Cuban reality is not understood, because the position of the Party, or the role of the Communist Party of Cuba in our society, is viewed as that of an electoral party, and in Cuba’s situation, it is not electoral. This is related to historical roots.

“Martí founded the Cuban Revolutionary Party, which is the foundation of what is now the Communist Party of Cuba, from the historical point of view, a party for elections was not sought.

“Martí sought a party to lead and develop the revolution that was going to pave the way for independence and sovereignty in the country, on the basis of unity, a party that was totally open and democratic, and included the interests of the majority, to win independence and sovereignty, and prevent division, limit the possibility of disunion.

“Our history is indelibly marked by the issue of unity, necessary unity. When we review our history, when our unity has gaps, when our unity has been broken, we have had setbacks…

“I am convinced that the enemy of the Cuban Revolution knows that its best option to defeat the Revolution has to do with fragmenting our unity, and is directing its main subversion projects toward this end.”