The northernmost coastal and central region is largely barren of vegetation, approaching the most absolute desert in the world. Jorge Alessandri succeeded Ibáñez del Campo in 1958, bringing Chilean conservatism back into power democratically for another term. The current Senate has a 21–15 split in favor of the governing coalition and 2 independents. An associate member of Mercosur and a full member of APEC, Chile has been a major player in international economic issues and hemispheric free trade.. In continental Chile, the Atacama Desert in the north and the Andes mountains to the east are barriers that have led to the isolation of flora and fauna.  Chile's total trade with China reached US$8.8 billion in 2006, representing nearly 66 percent of the value of its trade relationship with Asia. Among the coastal mountains and the Pacific is a series of coastal plains, of variable length, which allow the settlement of coastal towns and big ports. On the slopes of the Andes, in addition to the scattered tola desert brush, grasses are found.  About 10,000 years ago, migrating Indigenous Peoples settled in fertile valleys and coastal areas of what is present-day Chile. Another form of traditional Chilean song, though not a dance, is the tonada. These include eliminating the positions of appointed senators and senators for life, granting the President authority to remove the commanders-in-chief of the armed forces, and reducing the presidential term from six to four years.. Chile's 2017 census reported a population of 17,574,003. Chile slowly started to expand its influence and to establish its borders. The next Europeans to reach Chile were Diego de Almagro and his band of Spanish conquistadors, who came from Peru in 1535 seeking gold. Viña del Mar, Valparaíso's more affluent northern neighbor, is popular because of its beaches, casino, and its annual song festival, the most important musical event in Latin America. , Most of the immigrants to Chile during the 19th and 20th centuries came from France, Great Britain, Germany, and Croatia, among others. Some areas of the plains territories encompass territory east of the Andes, and the Patagonian steppes and Magellan, or are high plateaus surrounded by high mountain ranges, such as the Altiplano or Puna de Atacama. As a result, the top two candidates, center-left Nueva Mayoría coalition's Michelle Bachelet and center-right Alianza coalition's Evelyn Matthei, competed in a run-off election on 15 December 2013, which Bachelet won.  However, it is undeniable that immigrants have played a significant role in Chilean society. Hospitals in Chile are mainly located in the Santiago Metropolitan Region. The Andes mountain range loses height and erosion caused by the action of glaciers has caused fjords. , In southern Chile, south of the Biobío River, heavy precipitation has produced dense forests of laurels, magnolias, and various species of conifers and beeches, which become smaller and more stunted to the south. Chilean cuisine is a reflection of the country's topographical variety, featuring an assortment of seafood, beef, fruits, and vegetables.  In May 2010 Chile became the first South American country to join the OECD. The National Health Fund (Fonasa), created in 1979, is the financial entity entrusted to collect, manage and distribute state funds for health in Chile.  The Amerindian population of central Chile was absorbed into the Spanish settler population in the beginning of the colonial period to form the large mestizo population that exists in Chile today; mestizos create modern middle and lower classes. With the return of democratic government, the police were placed under the operational control of the Interior Ministry but remained under the nominal control of the Defense Ministry. On 12 February 1818, Chile was proclaimed an independent republic. A sport similar to hockey called chueca was played by the Mapuche people during the Spanish conquest.  President Aylwin served from 1990 to 1994, in what was considered a transition period. [nb 3]. , Copper mining makes up 20% of Chilean GDP and 60% of exports. Due to cultural and historical reasons, they are classified and distinguished four major areas in the country: northern areas, central, southern and south. The country is an active member of the UN family of agencies and participates in UN peacekeeping activities. Christian Democrat Patricio Aylwin, the candidate of a coalition of 17 political parties called the Concertación, received an absolute majority of votes (55%). , The conquest of Chile began in earnest in 1540 and was carried out by Pedro de Valdivia, one of Francisco Pizarro's lieutenants, who founded the city of Santiago on 12 February 1541. The current lower house, the Chamber of Deputies, contains 67 members of the governing center-left coalition, 48 from the center-right opposition and 5 from small parties or independents. ", Since 1961, all claims to Antarctic land are, Oehrens, E.B. Settlement sites from very early human habitation include Monte Verde, Cueva del Milodón and the Pali-Aike Crater's lava tube. Other results achieved by the national football team include two Copa América titles (2015 and 2016), and two runners up positions, one silver and two bronze medals at the Pan American Games, a bronze medal at the 2000 Summer Olympics and two third places finishes in the FIFA under-17 and under-20 youth tournaments. Chile actively participated in Operation Condor. Whole paragraph same as in Ravi Jyee et al., eds., World Encyclopaedia of American Countries, vol.  In 1994, a biological study determined that the Chilean composition was 64% European and 35% Amerindian. The decisions were accomplished on 27 January 1839 by the International Court of Justice This became the War of the Pacific which was in the years 1879–1883. Between 1950 and 1970 appears a rebirth in folk music leading by groups such as Los de Ramón, Los Cuatro Huasos and Los Huasos Quincheros, among others with composers such as Raúl de Ramón, Violeta Parra and others. Chile has appeared in nine FIFA World Cups which includes hosting the 1962 FIFA World Cup where the national football team finished third. The Spanish encountered various cultures that supported themselves principally through slash-and-burn agriculture and hunting. Due to Chile's topography a functioning transport network is vital to its economy.  Gabriela Mistral was the first Latin American to receive a Nobel Prize in Literature (1945). Chile borders Argentina and Bolivia in the east, and it shares a short border with Peru in the north.  With the military coup of 1973, Chile became isolated politically as a result of widespread human rights abuses. Due to term limits, Sebastián Piñera did not stand for re-election in 2013, and his term expired in March 2014 resulting in Michelle Bachelet returning to office. , In 1984, a study called Sociogenetic Reference Framework for Public Health Studies in Chile, from the Revista de Pediatría de Chile determined an ancestry of 67.9% European, and 32.1% Native American. "Chile" (always written with a capital letter) is a country in South America. 7,853,428 out of 11,226,309 people over 15 years of age. On 27 February 2010, Chile was struck by an 8.8 Mw earthquake, the fifth largest ever recorded at the time. Film production originated in Valparaíso on 26 May 1902 with the premiere of the documentary Exercise General Fire Brigade, the first film completely filmed and processed in the country. Historically agriculture is one of the bases of Chile's economy. Chile with an "e" at the end is the most common Spanish spelling in Mexico and other Latin American countries.  The capital and largest city is Santiago and the national language is Spanish. The Mapuche make up 12% of Chile's population but are not recognised in the country's constitution.  Faced with an international economic downturn the government announced an economic stimulus plan to spur employment and growth, and despite the global financial crisis, aimed for an expansion of between 2 percent and 3 percent of GDP for 2009. The Congress is located in the port city of Valparaíso, about 140 kilometres (87 miles) west of the capital, Santiago.  Exports to Asia increased from US$15.2 billion in 2005 to US$19.7 billion in 2006, a 29.9 percent increase. The Andes Mountains are located on the eastern border.  The current account deficit was 4% in the first quarter of 2013, financed mostly by foreign direct investment.  It also ranks high regionally in sustainability of the state, and democratic development. Simultaneously, opposition media, politicians, business guilds and other organizations helped to accelerate a campaign of domestic political and economical destabilization, some of which was backed by the United States. Luis Ayala was twice a runner-up at the French Open and both Ríos and Fernando González reached the Australian Open men's singles finals. After the Spanish invasion, Spanish took over as the lingua franca and the indigenous languages have become minority languages, with some now extinct or close to extinction.. More than 500 people died (most from the ensuing tsunami) and over a million people lost their homes.  The reform has replaced inquisitorial proceedings with an adversarial system more similar to that of the United States. Chile's most popular sport is association football.  European migration did not result in a significant change in the ethnic composition of Chile, except in the region of Magellan. This development culminated with the 1973 Chilean coup d'état that overthrew Salvador Allende's democratically elected left-wing government and instituted a 16-year right-wing military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet that left more than 3,000 people dead or missing. East of the Andes, on the continent, or north of it, on the island of Tierra del Fuego are located relatively flat plains, which in the Strait of Magellan cover large areas. A Chilean court decision in November 2009 considered to be a landmark ruling on indigenous rights and made use of the convention. A long and narrow coastal Southern Cone country on the west side of the Andes Mountains, Chile stretches over 4,300 km (2,670 mi) north to south, but only 350 km (217 mi) at its widest point east to west. Subsequent major insurrections took place in 1598 and in 1655. However, the Roman Catholic church for mostly historical and social reasons enjoys a privileged status and occasionally receives preferential treatment. Buccaneers and pirates menaced the colony in addition to the Mapuche, as was shown by Sir Francis Drake's 1578 raid on Valparaíso, the colony's principal port. In the north is the driest place on Earth, the Atacama Desert, and in the center is a 700-mile-long (1,127 km) thickly populated valley with most of Chile's arable land. In the 2009 legislative elections in Chile, the Communist Party won 3 out of 120 seats in the Chamber of Deputies for the first time in 30 years (the Communist Party was not allowed to exist as such during the dictatorship). The true total number of fungal species occurring in Chile is likely to be far higher, given the generally accepted estimate that only about 7 percent of all fungi worldwide have so far been discovered. Universidad de Chile, Santiago de Chile, 1980, Kirk, P.M., Cannon, P.F., Minter, D.W. and Stalpers, J. Chile is a country in South America that borders the South Pacific Sea. It was just a depression accumulated marine sediments began to rise at the end of the Mesozoic, 66 million years ago, due to the collision between the Nazca and South American plates, resulting in the Andes. Privatization of the telephone system began in 1988; Chile has one of the most advanced telecommunications infrastructure in South America with a modern system based on extensive microwave radio relay facilities and domestic satellite system with 3 earth stations.  Finally, Easter Island in the Pacific Ocean is one of the main Chilean tourist destinations.  Also, roughly 500,000 of Chile's population is of full or partial Palestinian origin, and 800,000 Arab descents.  Currently it also has the lowest homicide rate in the Americas after Canada. A second international war, the War of the Pacific (1879–83), further increased Chile's regional role, while adding considerably to its territory. 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