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Friday, October 31 2014 @ 10:11 AM EDT

Potential for Civil Unrest in Panama

Panama NewsAccording to press reports, the Torrijos administration will soon anounce its reforms of the Social Security Administration, and it is believed the administration will move for rapid legislative consideration. There is concern that some organizations will attempt to derail the reform by sponsoring public demonstrations, which could become violent. (Dear Wardens: Please disseminate this message to U.S. citizens in your area. Thank you.)

Given these possibilities, we recommend that you be alert, monitor the news, and carry your cell phones while you are out in the city during these new few weeks while out in Panama City and other towns in the country.

The Embassy is closely monitoring this situation and will provide timely notification of areas of concern. If you happen to see a disturbance or confrontation, get out of the area as quickly as possible and contact the Regional Security Office at 207-7160.

For updated information on the security situation in Panama, please contact the American Citizens Services Unit of the U.S. Embassy at 207-7030.

The Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy is located in The Clayton Building (formerly Fort Clayton Building 520) in the Clayton section of Panama. The Consular Section fax is 207-7278. The Embassy web site is http://usembassy.state.gov/panama and e-mails should be address to Panama-ACS@state.gov .


(Added Notes: Panama has a long history of civil unrest. Some kind of protest or demonstration always accompanies any change in public policy. The image above was taken when the government was considering a change to the bus fares for public transportation. You can expect marches, protests, and possibly stone throwing and tear gas. These conflicts will be between protestors and riot police, so just aviod the areas where the marches or protests are occuring. No matter what happens, it won't be as bad as what the '49'ers had to face when crossing Panama to get to California. Also, please understand that the article was written by a scared and ignorant child in 1856 in the language of the day. I include it here to provide some interesting historical background, and to show how one drunken fruit-stealing sailor can start a whole lot of trouble.)


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The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Potential for Civil Unrest in Panama
Authored by: Anonymous on Saturday, May 14 2005 @ 12:09 PM EDT

(One Reader's Comments) This a caution from the American Embassy on the possible demonstrations of the workers on the Seguro Social of Panama. The
government is attempting to reform the seguro social since it is becoming bankrupt.

<p>I do not believe the demonstrations would be violent. The workers are asking for a referendum to discuss the proposed changes.

<p>The best caution is to avoid Panama City for a period of time and watch the news to determine if there are any demonstrations and where so they can be avoided.

<p>If you are coming to visit Altos or the interior of the country there would be no problems. Also Panamenians do not demonstrate on the weekends, that is party and fun time. Week days usually interrupting traffic and probably around the Seguro Social I will monitor the situation and post any information as things evolve so that you can make a decision.