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News | June 15, 2022

SOUTHCOM Commander Visits Panama

By U.S. Southern Command Public Affairs

PANAMA (June 14, 2022) – The commander of U.S. Southern Command, U.S. Army Gen. Laura Richardson, visited Panama June 12-14 to meet with leaders and reaffirm the close security partnership between the United States and Panama. 

The visit was Richardson’s first to Panama and was an opportunity to hear from Panama’s leaders -- to listen to their views, understand their challenges, share ideas, and look for new opportunities to partner in the future.

The visit followed recent U.S. high-level visits to Panama, including First Lady Dr. Jill Biden’s visit in May and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken’s visit in April. 

On June 13, Richardson met with Panamanian President Laurentino Cortizo Cohen to discuss joint efforts to strengthen regional security. She also met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Erika Mouynes, and discussed joint efforts to strengthen regional security. 

Later on the 13th, the general met with Panama Canal Administrator, Dr. Ricaurte Vásquez Morales, to discuss the safety of the canal.

Richardson discussed ongoing and future collaboration with Panama security forces during a meeting with Panama Minister of Public Security Juan Pino on June 14.

She concluded the trip with a round table focused on implementation of the UN’s Women, Peace and Security initiative. Richardson joined Pino and female leaders of Panama's security establishments for a discussion on the contribution of women to security in Panama and the region.

The United States and Panama share a longstanding security partnership that dates back more than a century.