Having seen “Baghdad” gang leader Jorge Rubén Camargo Clarke (aka “Cholo Chorrillo”) extradited from Costa Rica to the US, Panama has said that it wants him sent to Panama when the US is finished with him, so he can face justice here. It is alleged that the Panama-based gang is linked to some 70 homicides and is responsible for moving cocaine from Colombia to Panama, then sending it to the US.

Over 180 homes are said to have been destroyed by fire in the Wala community, located in the Guna de Wargandí region of Darien. The Wargandí Region is one of the 5officially recognised indigenous regions in Panama, is located on the border with Colombia, and extends over 1,600 square kilometers.

Meanwhile, the Critica newspaper reports that, according to the latest national survey carried out in 2019, some 70% of adults have a problem with being overweight or obese.

On a personal note, to someone from Europe, where low fat, low sugar/sugar-free and diet options are widely available, it is noticeable that most soft drinks in Panama appear to be of the high sugar kind; and this is a place where you need to drink, a lot. For example, you will often find in a supermarket a whole aisle of soft drinks, with only (if you are lucky) some Diet Coke as a sugar-free option. I have still to find, for example, sugar-free muesli and other such healthier options. These may be more available in higher-price stores frequented by ex-pat gringos, but not in your usual, local store. I know I live in a city, but it does seem to me that much of the population appears to be addicted to fast food takeaways and home deliveries.

5 MARCH 2023

Author: raytodd2017

Chartered Legal Executive and former senior manager with Isle of Man Customs and Excise, where I was (amongst other things) Sanctions Officer (for UN/EU sanctions), Export Licensing Officer and Manager of the Legal-Library & Collectorate Support Section

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