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Costa Rican truck drivers end their blockade of Panama border

August 29th, 2013 ( Costa Rican truck drivers ended their blockade of the Paso Canoas border with Panama yesterday afternoon, after mediation by Costa Rican and Panamanian authorities.


The blockade began on Saturday in protest against Panama’s State Border Service (SENAFRONT), according to those who led the demonstration.


Some 17 Costa Rican trucker drivers blocked the entry of other trailers, and promised to continue the demonstration until a resolution to their grievances was reached.


Truckers complain that SENAFRONT systematically stops and fines Costa Rica-tagged trailers for minor offenses such as having low tread on their tires, lack of reflective triangles and not having hydraulic jacks.


Truck drivers say SENAFRONT officials confiscate the keys to their trailers, requiring them to travel some 30 kilometers from the border to the city of David to pay fines in order for the return of their keys.  The fines can only be paid on weekdays, causing further problems for the drivers.


It was not known at press time what resolutions resulted from the mediation by authorities.

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