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Coat of arms

National anthem

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 General information

Prior to the coming of the Spanish in the 16th century, northern Chile was under Inca rule while Araucanian Indians (also known as Mapuches) inhabited central and southern Chile; the latter were not completely subjugated by Spain until the early 1880s. Although Chile declared its independence in 1810, decisive victory over the Spanish was not achieved until 1818. In the War of the Pacific (1879-83), Chile defeated Peru and Bolivia and won its present northern regions. A three-year-old Marxist government of Salvador Allende was overthrown in 1973 by a military coup led by Augusto Pinochet, who ruled until a freely elected president was installed in 1990. Sound economic policies, maintained consistently since the 1980s, have contributed to steady growth, reduced poverty rates by over half, and have helped secure the country's commitment to democratic and representative government. Chile has increasingly assumed regional and international leadership roles befitting its status as a stable, democratic nation.

  • 3-Letter abbreviation: CHI
  • 2-Letter abbreviation: CL
  • Country common name: Chile
  • Country official name: Republic of Chile
  • Continent: South America
  • Capital: Santiago
  • Other major cities: Antofagasta, Puente Alto, San Bernardo, Talcahuano, Temuco, Valparaíso, Viña del Mar
  • Currency: Chilean peso
  • Official languages: Spanish
  • Motto: "By Reason or Force"
  • National holiday: Independence Day, 18 September (1810)
 Geographic information
  • Surface area: 756,950  km²
  • Highest point: Nevado Ojos del Salado 6,880 m
  • Neighbouring countries/borderline lenght: Argentina 5,308 km, Bolivia 860 km, Peru 171 km
  • Neighbouring seas and oceans: South Pacific Ocean
  • Population (in millions): 16.1 (2005)
  • Gross domestic product (GDP) per inhabitant (in US dollars): 12,700
  • Density (inhabitants per km²): 21.5
  • Average age (in years): 30.4
  • Life expectancy at birth (in years): 76.77
 Telephone & Internet communication
  • Country international telephone code: + 56
  • Internet code: .cl
  • Number of Internet users: 6.7 million (2005)