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Chile Government

    Country name:
    conventional long form: Republic of Chile
    conventional short form: Chile
    local long form: Republica de Chile
    local short form: Chile

    Data code: CI

    Government type: republic

    Capital: Santiago

    Administrative divisions: 13 regions (regiones, singular—region); Aisen del General Carlos Ibanez del Campo, Antofagasta, Araucania, Atacama, Bio-Bio, Coquimbo, Libertador General Bernardo O'Higgins, Los Lagos, Magallanes y de la Antartica Chilena, Maule, Region Metropolitana, Tarapaca, Valparaiso
    note: the US does not recognize claims to Antarctica

    Independence: 18 September 1810 (from Spain)

    National holiday: Independence Day, 18 September (1810)

    Constitution: 11 September 1980, effective 11 March 1981; amended 30 July 1989

    Legal system: based on Code of 1857 derived from Spanish law and subsequent codes influenced by French and Austrian law; judicial review of legislative acts in the Supreme Court; does not accept compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

    Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

    Executive branch:
    chief of state: President Eduardo FREI Ruiz-Tagle (since 11 March 1994); note—the president is both the chief of state and head of government
    head of government: President Eduardo FREI Ruiz-Tagle (since 11 March 1994); note—the president is both the chief of state and head of government
    cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president
    elections: president elected by popular vote for a six-year term; election last held 11 December 1993 (next to be held NA December 1999)
    election results: Eduardo FREI Ruiz-Tagle elected president; percent of vote—Eduardo FREI Ruiz-Tagle (PDC) 58%, Arturo ALESSANDRI 24.4%, other 17.6%

    Legislative branch: bicameral National Congress or Congreso Nacional consists of the Senate or Senado (48 seats, 38 elected by popular vote; members serve eight-year terms—one-half elected every four years) and the Chamber of Deputies or Camara de Diputados (120 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
    elections: Senate—last held 11 December 1997 (next to be held NA December 2001); Chamber of Deputies—last held 11 December 1997 (next to be held NA December 2001)
    election results: Senate—percent of vote by party—NA%; seats by party—CPD (PDC 14, PS 4, PPD 2), UPP 17 (RN 7, UDI 10), Chile 2000 (UCCP) 1, independent 10; Chamber of Deputies—percent of vote by party—CPD 50.55% (PDC 22.98%, PS 11.10%, PPD 12.55%, PRSD 3.13%), UPP 36.23% (RN 16.78%, UDI 14.43%); seats by party—CPD 70 (PDC 39, PPD 16, PRSD 4, PS 11), UPP 46 (RN 24, UDI 21, Party of the South 1), right-wing independents 4

    Judicial branch: Supreme Court (Corte Suprema), judges are appointed by the president and ratified by the Senate from lists of candidates provided by the court itself; the president of the Supreme Court is elected by the 21-member court

    Political parties and leaders: Coalition of Parties for Democracy or CPD consists mainly of: Christian Democratic Party or PDC [Enrique KRAUSS], Socialist Party or PS [Ricardo NUNEZ], Party for Democracy or PPD [Sergio BITAR], Radical Social Democratic Party or PRSD [Anselmo SULE]; Union for the Progress of Chile or UPP consists mainly of two parties: National Renewal or RN [Alberto ESPINA] and Independent Democratic Union or UDI [Pablo LONGUEIRA]; Chile 2000's main party is Progressive Center-Center Union or UCCP [Francisco Javier ERRAZURIZ]

    Political pressure groups and leaders: revitalized university student federations at all major universities; United Labor Central or CUT includes trade unionists from the country's five largest labor confederations; Roman Catholic Church

    International organization participation: APEC, CCC, ECLAC, FAO, G-11, G-77, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarsat, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAES, LAIA, Mercosur (associate), NAM, OAS, OPANAL, OPCW, PCA, RG, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMIBH, UNMOGIP, UNTSO, UNU, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

    Diplomatic representation in the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador Genaro Luis ARRIAGADA Herrera
    chancery: 1732 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036
    telephone: [1] (202) 785-1746
    FAX: [1] (202) 887-5579
    consulate(s) general: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and San Juan (Puerto Rico)

    Diplomatic representation from the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador John O'LEARY
    embassy: Avenida Andres Bello 2800, Santiago
    mailing address: APO AA 34033
    telephone: [56] (2) 232-2600
    FAX: [56] (2) 330-3710

    Flag description: two equal horizontal bands of white (top) and red; there is a blue square the same height as the white band at the hoist-side end of the white band; the square bears a white five-pointed star in the center; design was based on the US flag

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)