Doctor says brain tumor growing in Panama’s Manuel Noriega

PANAMA CITY (AP) — A personal doctor and a daughter of imprisoned former Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega say his benign brain tumor has grown significantly and will require surgery.

Dr. Eduardo Reyes said Thursday that recent magnetic resonance scans of the 82-year-old former general revealed growth of the tumor that was first detected four years earlier. He said it would require surgery. He said the tumor’s growth could affect Noriega’s brain function.

Thays Noriega, one of the former dictator’s daughters, says her father had experienced some types of “crisis” that could be attributable to the tumor. She says it’s worrisome because of his age and contends he would not have the conditions for recovery in prison.

Noriega ruled Panama from 1983 until a U.S. invasion removed him from power in 1989.