‘Historic’ Cuban official, José Ramón Balaguer, dies at 90

A longtime member of Cuba’s communist leadership has died at age 90.

José Ramón Balaguer was a part of Fidel Castro’s forces as they toppled dictator Fulgencio Batista in 1959 and went on to hold a series of important posts in the Communist Party and government.

He had served as the party’s ideology chief, was the island’s last ambassador to the Soviet Union and as health minister sent thousands of doctors on missions to win hearts and minds in developing countries around the world.

The government reported his death late Friday.

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