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The Panama Conference was a meeting by representatives of the United States and twenty other American states held in Panama on September 23, 1939, shortly after the beginning of World War II in Europe.

The participants divided themselves into three sub-committees to discuss neutrality, the maintenance of peace in the area, and economic cooperation. At the end of its deliberations the conference issued the Panama Declaration, which confirmed the neutrality of the participants, banned belligerent submarines from entering their ports, demanded the cessation of subversive activities within their countries, and announced the formation of a maritime security zone which was to extend for 480 km. (300 mi.) on either side of the American continent, except for Canada and the colonies and possessions of European states. It was this area that was subsequently policed by the Neutrality Patrol.[1]

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