• Costa Rica Real Estate

Calm restored in Panama following violent protests

October 27, 2012

PANAMA CITY – Business slowly returned to normal Saturday following a violent week in Panama that left at least three people dead during protests against the government’s approval of public land sales in the country’s free zone.

“Tranquility and normality have returned to the streets following last week’s protest,” police spokeswoman Mara Rivera told AFP.

Police clashed with rioters on several occasions beginning Oct. 19, both in the capital and the city of Colón, where the free zone is located. The riots were sparked by a law allowing the sale of public land there. Three people were killed in the clashes, and dozens were injured.

President Ricardo Martinelli returned early from a tour of Asia, announcing via Twitter that the government would pass a bill “rescinding all parts of the law, without exception.”

Panama’s Chamber of Commerce reported that the demonstrations caused $40 million in losses and blocked some $500 million in goods from being traded in the free zone.

On Saturday, the Panamanian Congress unanimously approved by a vote of 57-0 a bill to rescind the law in a second of three debates. A third debate is scheduled for Sunday, and final passage will require Martinelli’s signature.

Protest organizers agreed to hold talks with the government to transfer funding from free zone profits and other parts of Colón to social programs.

Although Panama’s free zone contributed $1.7 billion of a total $23.2 billion of gross domestic product in 2011, it is located in one of the poorest regions of the country.

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

UN elects Venezuela over Costa Rica to serve on Human Rights Council
Costa Rica
21 views
Costa Rica
21 views

UN elects Venezuela over Costa Rica to serve on Human Rights Council

Alejandro Zúñiga - October 17, 2019

Costa Rica's bid to block Venezuela from serving on the United Nations Human Rights Council came up just short. During…

Walmart now sells Costa Rican coffee under its ‘Great Value’ brand
Business
48 views
Business
48 views

Walmart now sells Costa Rican coffee under its ‘Great Value’ brand

Alejandro Zúñiga - October 17, 2019

Walmart's presence in Costa Rica is seemingly inescapable. In addition to the 12 Walmart Supercenters it operates in Costa Rica,…

TBT: Costa Rica’s Pacific Railroad in Puntarenas
Throwback Thursday
12 views
Throwback Thursday
12 views

TBT: Costa Rica’s Pacific Railroad in Puntarenas

The Tico Times - October 17, 2019

Costa Rica's Pacific Railroad (Ferrocarril al Pacifico) provided an important link between the capital of San José and Puntarenas, one…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!