Panama has one of the most stable democracies in Latin America. It is presided over by Martin Torrijos, and two Vice Presidents, Samuel Lewis Navarro and Ruben Arosemena Valdes. Panama is an independent democratic country.
The U.S. presence in Panama has been strong throughout its history: it stationed troops in the country to protect the waterway of the Canal and has intervened to control political events in Panama. On the 31st December 1999, the U.S. relinquished control of the Canal to Panama, an agreement reached in 1978.