I was copied on a message received from Charlie Garcia - I think the comments are applicable to everyone, as it is one's responsibility to be aware of one's surroundings.
Subject: Security Message for U.S. Citizens:Ongoing protests in Panama with possible violence
This Emergency message is to alert U.S. citizens residing and traveling in Panama that throughout the morning of October 26th, various groups have held protests at multiple locations throughout Panama City. While earlier in the day the protests were generally nonviolent, news media are reporting that they have turned violent in several locations in Panama City and Colon, including at the National Assembly and Electoral Tribunal. There are reports of spreading vandalism including in Plaza 5 de Mayo and Calidonia. Accordingly, the Embassy’s security office is urging all U.S. government personnel to avoid the area around Plaza 5 de Mayo/National Assembly/Calidonia.
The city of Colon also continues to experience violent protest activity and should be avoided as well. U.S. citizens in Colon should remain indoors, monitor local media, and avoid protests and demonstrations if they must move about the city.
Please monitor media reporting for news of continued road closures and disruptions, and particularly for incidents of violence.
For updated information on the security situation in Panama, please contact the American Citizen Services Unit of the Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy at (011)-507-317-5030. The Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy is located in Clayton, Building 783, in the Clayton section of Panama.
The Embassy web site is panama.usembassy.gov/
and e-mails should be addressed to Panama-ACS@state.gov
. The after-hours and emergency phone number is (011)-507-317-5000.
For up-to-date information on security, Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department’s Internet web site at travel.state.gov.
Further information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
U.S. citizens who travel to or reside in Panama are encouraged to enroll in the State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). By enrolling, you make it easier for the U.S. Embassy to contact you in case of an emergency.