One year after the U.S. military invasion of Panama, the Army has revised upward its estimate of the dead, based on Panamanian government statistics, the Southern Command said Friday.
It said in a news release that figures from the Panamanian Institute of Legal Medicine show a maximum of 345 soldiers and civilians may have died in the Dec. 21, 1989, invasion to oust Gen. Manuel Antonio Noriega. Positive identifications were made of 270 dead and 75 additional bodies are missing. At the time of the invasion, the Army calculated deaths at 314.The opposition to President Guillermo Endara's government says thousands died, but the Southern Command said, "The allegations have turned out to be without foundation." The Panamanian Human Rights Committee estimated 295 to 385 died.
The Army said 65 bodies were identified as military personnel, 155 as civilians and 50 not classified.