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Raul Castro was named first secretary of Cuba's Communist Party on Tuesday, and his aging brother Fidel was formally removed from the leadership for the first time since the party's creation 46 years ago.

The elder Castro made a surprise appearance at the gathering, receiving thunderous applause from the 1,000 delegates assembled in a vast convention centre in Havana.

Many could be seen crying as the man who led the 1959 revolution to overthrow Fulgencio Batista was helped to his place on stage by a young aide, then stood at attention next to his 79-year-old brother during the playing of Cuba's national anthem.

Al Jazeera's Latin America Editor, Lucia Newman has more on the country's first Party congress in 14 years.

Source: Al Jazeera