Panama's Manuel Noriega to undergo brain surgery

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PANAMA CITY (AP) — Former Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega is in the hospital to undergo surgery Tuesday to remove a benign tumor from his brain.

Thays Noriega, one of his daughters, made the announcement Monday.

Noriega had been in prison for murdering opponents during his 1983-89 reign and for corruption, but authorities allowed the 83-year-old to switch to house arrest about a month ago so he could prepare for the procedure. It originally was scheduled for Feb. 15.

The tumor was detected several years ago, but has grown and could affect his brain function.

Noriega was ousted by a U.S. invasion in 1989 and was imprisoned in the United States on drug offenses. He then was jailed in France for money laundering and was returned to Panama in 2011 for further imprisonment.

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