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Chronology of Events in Panama With PM-Panama

February 26, 1988

PANAMA CITY, Panama (AP) _ Here is a chronology of major events in Panama leading to the ouster of the civilian president, Eric Arturo Devalle, in a showdown with Gen. Manuel Antonio Noriega:

May 6, 1984 - Nicolas Ardito Barletta is elected president on the ticket of a military-backed coalition, amid charges of fraud.

Sep. 27, 1985 - Noriega, chief of the Defense Forces, and other military leaders force out Ardito Barletta and replace him with Eric Arturo Delvalle, formerly vice president.

June 6, 1987 - Col. Roberto Diaz Herrera, Noriega’s recently retired second in command, accuses Noriega of election fraud, drug trafficking, corruption and involvement in the assassination of political opponents.

June 9 - The National Civic Crusade is formed, initially by 101 professional, civic, labor and business groups to demand Noriega’s resignation. Small street demonstrations break out, for and against Noriega.

July 26 - Police close down the newspapers La Prensa, Extra and El Siglo for publishing articles demanding Noriega’s resignation.

July 27 - Police raid the headquarters of the National Civic Crusade and arrest five leaders. They are later released and flee the country.

Aug. 31 - A nationwide strike planned by the opposition fizzles. One man is killed and seven are wounded. Demonstrations continue almost daily for about two months.

Feb. 5 - Noriega is indicted in courts in Miami and Tampa, Fla., on charges of involvement in drug-trafficking.

Feb. 25 - Delvalle announces that he is dismissing Noriega as defense chief and replacing him with Col. Marcos Justines, the chief of staff. Justines refuses to take the job.

Feb. 26 - The National Assembly meets in emergency session at 1 a.m. and votes to oust Delvalle. Education Minister Manuel Solis Palma is named the new head of state and sworn into office.

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