Notorious Panama military director Manuel Antonio Noriega died Monday, news reports out of the Central American country said.
Noriega was 83-years old at the time of his death. He was being kept at a hospital in intensive care after a complication from brain surgery in March.
He had the surgery March 7 to remove a benign tumor from his brain. After the surgery, he was brought back to the operating room for an emergency surgery after bleeding was discovered. He had been kept sedated by hospital staff until then until his family decided to pull the plug Monday.
Noriega’s daughter Sandra had confirmed that the former military general of Panama was in critical condition after a hemorrhage in his brain had inflamed. His spokesperson Ezra Angel told media that the bleeding in his head was controlled and he was sedated until Friday.
Noriega, who was the military dictator of Panama from 1983 until 1989, was serving sentences for two gruesome murders. He was removed from prison and placed on house arrest for three months in late January so that he could obtain medical assistance for his health concerns.
In 1989, Noriega was removed from power by the United States during the invasion of Panama. He had unified the armed forces of Panama into the Panamanian Defense Forces in 1983 and appointed himself to general, thus becoming the “leader” of Panama. Six years after doing so in 1989, he canceled presidential elections and tried to rule the country through a “puppet government.” A military coup against his regime was attempted, but failed until the U.S. invaded Panama and he surrendered in 1990.
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