Martyrs’ Day is a Panamanian holiday, which commemorates the January 9, 1964 riots over sovereignty of the Panama Canal Zone. The incident is considered to be a significant factor in the U.S. decision to transfer control of the Canal Zone to Panama through the 1977 Torrijos-Carter Treaties.
The U.S. Embassy in Panama City advises all U.S. citizens in Panama that Martyrs’ Day will be observed this year on Saturday, January 9, 2016. The U.S. Embassy alerts U.S. citizens to possible street closures and traffic congestion due to scheduled marches and other events around Panama City. All U.S. citizens are reminded of the sensitivity of this day and urged to remain diligent in your personal security. For up-to-date information on security, Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department’s Internet web site at http://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.