HAVANA – The Cuban government for the first time published in both paper and digital format the complete text of the proposed new constitution, which includes important social and economic changes, state-run media reported Tuesday.
The postal service, Correos de Cuba, will put on sale at its distribution points some 600,000 copies of the draft at the price of 1 peso (4 cents), the Prensa Latina state news agency reported.
The document will also be available on the national parliament’s Web page and on the Web sites of state media outlets.
The draft of the new national charter, which includes 224 articles, has already been approved by the Cuban legislature.
Standing out in the new document are assorted economic changes, including eliminating the term “communism” and incorporating the economic reforms of former President Raul Castro over the past decade favoring a sustainable socialism with private property, as well as recognizing the need to promote foreign investment on the island.
In the social realm, the document includes the redefinition of marriage as the “union between two people,” a move that opens the door to the legalization of same-sex unions, one of the main demands of the local LGTB community.
More limited are the changes that the new constitution will impose on the political sphere, where the “socialist character of the political and social system” of the island under the Communist Party of Cuba as the “superior ruling force” will remain intact.
The text will be submitted to popular consultation between Aug. 13 and Nov. 15 in a process that will include more than 135,000 meetings in workplaces, schools and among expatriates.
When that step is completed, the text will return to parliament and, finally, the definitive version of the charter will be submitted to a public referendum for its final approval by the citizenry.