The US gives up Panama Canal

Protesters Opposing Give Up Contol of the Canal

On September 7th 1977 the United States signed a treaty that gave up its control of the Panama Canal Zone. Under the terms of the new treaty the US still had the right to defend it.


On September 7th, 1977the United States and Panama signed the Torrijos-Carter Treaty revoking the treaty of 1903, which had granted the US control of the Panama Canal forever. The new agreement called the Panamanian control of the Canal by the year 2000. The continued American ownership of the Panama Canal resulted in growing protests in Panama, which were supported throughout South America. President Carter supported reaching a treaty with Panama to return control of the Canal. On September 7th, the United States and Panama, under the leadership of General Omar Torrijos, reached an accord that would restore full control of the Canal to the Panamanians by the year 2000. Under the terms of the treaty, the United States maintained the right to defend the Canal beyond that point. There was strong opposition in the Senate to the approval of the accord, but the president ultimately prevailed by a small majority.