The U.S Vice President Mike Pence has made a visit on Thursday for the newly expanded Panama Canal as he wrapped up a truncated trip to Latin America. Pence met with Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela prior to leave for Washington on Thursday evening. Pence had actually made a plan to stay in the Central American country overnight, but he cut his trip short in order to attend a weekend meeting on South Asia at Camp David. Pence also spent much of his visit working to assure Latin American allies that the United States remains invested in the region despite President Donald Trump’s “America First” rhetoric. He has also stressed that leaders in the region should intensify pressure on the Venezuelan government because there is a fear of the dictatorship and civil war.

Mike Pence

That mission was considered more complicated by surprise suggestion of Trump right before Pence said that a “Military Option” might be on the table against Venezuela. Leaders across the region ensured Pence that they strongly refused the alleged suggestion. Chilean President Michelle Bachelet said on Wednesday that Chile also confirmed in providing its strong support Venezuela in finding a peaceful way out. But, Chile will not support military operations. A major financial center in Panama has indicated that Pence and Varela said they discussed commercial and security ties, as well as drug trafficking, illegal migration, and money laundering. They delivered their words after meeting and Pence said that Panama had been considered an “invaluable” U.S. partner and thanked the country for its struggles to control illegal drugs and as the best partner regarding border security.