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LOS SANTOS

Los Santos is a province of Panama, reaching from the La Villa river in the North to the Pacific Ocean in the south and east. It is part of Azuero Peninsula, bounded by province of Herrera to the north and northeast and Mariato disctrict in Veraguas to the West. The City of Las Tablas is thecapital and most populous city; seven other disctricts of Los Santos, Guararé, Las Tablas, Macaracas, Pedasi, Pocrí and Tonosí are under the jurisdiction of Los Santos Province Governorate.

Los Santos' area is 3 809.4 km ², and its population is about 89,592 inhabitants. In this region are the oldest human settlements in the Isthmus of Panama. It was part of the cultural region of Gran Cocle where one of the first ceramic styles of the Americas developed. The first Europeans to explore Los Santos were the Spanish in 1515 under the command of Gonzalo de Badajoz. Upon the arrival of Europeans the area was ruled by the cacique Antataura or Cutara, and was known as the Land of Mr. Paris or Parita from Ngäbere Bari-ta meaning Confederation of Peoples, having under his control six other Indian chiefdoms: Guararí, Quemá, Chiracoitia, Huere, Guanata and Usagaña. The only province that was not under his dominion was Escoria. Gaspar de Espinosa succeeded in conquering and annexing Pariba to the Spanish Empire in 1516, decimating nearly all of the native population.

Geographically, Los Santos is located in the 'Arco Seco', name given to the strip of land between theGulf of Panama and the Central Mountain range which includes areas of the provinces of Cocle,Herrera and Veraguas in the south of the Isthmus of Panama. It's climate is mainly a tropical savanna climate with moderate temperatures, strongly influenced by the winds of the Pacific Oceancrashing against the mountains, and the Humboldt Current.

The average annual rainfall is 1,200 mm, allowing the growth of either dry or humid rainforest. Its highest point is located at the peak of Cerro Hoya with 1559 metres. Other major peaks are Cambutal hill (1400 metres) and Mount The Ñopos (1068 metres). The modern province of Los Santos, was created in January 1945 replacing the defunct province of Azuero according to Cabinet Decree No. 13, leaving its territorial regime regulated by the second chapter of the Law 58 of July 29, 1998, losing the Territory of Quebro in this process. Although Los Santos closely shares its political and social history with the rest of Panama, and the vast majority of the population speaks Spanish, the province has retained a distinct cultural identity. Los Santos' culture is the result of the passage of different peoples and civilizations that, over time, have shaped a particular cultural identity. These people, some very different from each other, have been slowly leaving an imprint seated among the inhabitants. It is one of the last regions in Panama where Spanish voseo is the standard form for use.