Panamanian refugees fleeing the fighting took cover in soccer stadiums, churches and schools in Panama City. "They had water, but we're very short of food," said a Red Cross worker. He said U.S. Army units were handing out rations but that it was not enough.
Some refugees pleaded for medicine.
Sometimes the medicine was for injuries inflicted by fellow Panamanians. Dorita Alvarez, a resident of the middle-class El Dorado neighborhood in eastern Panama City, said she encountered violence from her countrymen Wednesday morning while she was driving home from her office with a friend.