The state funeral of the former president of Chile Sebastian Piñerawho died this Tuesday in a helicopter accident at the age of 74, will be held on Friday morning at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Santiago, Chilean Foreign Minister Alberto van Klaveren announced this Wednesday.
“Once the mass is over, The remains will be transferred to the Parque del memoria Cemetery“, but not before passing in front of La Moneda, where a tribute will be paid to him by the palace guard and the President of the Republic, Gabriel Boric,” said the chancellor, who assured that he still has no confirmation from the international leaders who will attend the ceremony.
Van Klaveren assured that the final details of the funeral are still being worked out. and indicated that until now “they have no confirmation of which international leaders will participate in the funeral.”
“I take this opportunity to thank all the condolences we have received as Chancellery of foreign leaders, heads of state and government, sitting foreign ministers and also former presidents,” the minister noted.
At 3:30 p.m. local time on Tuesday (6:30 p.m. GMT), the helicopter in which Piñera was traveling, along with three other people who managed to save themselves, crashed shortly after taking off over Lake Ranco.a tourist resort located 800 kilometers south of Santiago, where he used to spend summers with his family.
The Prosecutor’s Office is investigating the causes of the accident and the death of the former ruler, who He was an expert pilot and, according to local media, He was driving the ship in the middle of heavy rain and sank when he could not unfasten his seat belt.
Piñera’s body is in the Legal Medical Service (SML) of Valdivia, capital of the Los Ríos region to which the Ranco Lake and where the autopsy is being performed, and he will be transferred this morning to the Chilean capital on a plane of the Chilean Armed Forces (FACh).
He will be received at the capital airport around 10:40 local time (13:40 GMT) by the president, Gabriel Boricand several ministers and the procession will later leave for the headquarters of the National Congress, in Santiagowhere the former ruler will be watched first by the family, the chancellor detailed.
“Probably this afternoon, at a time that will be informed in due course, the doors will open so that those who want to pay tribute can do so. The wake will be extended to tomorrow,” he added.
Piñera, who governed Chile in two non-consecutive terms (2010-2014 and 2018-2022), is the second former president to die after the return to democracy in 1990.
The first was the Christian Democrat Patricio Aylwinleader of the Chilean transition and who died on April 19, 2016.
Dozens of citizens gathered shortly after hearing the news at the doors of both his summer home in Ranco and his main residence, in the wealthy capital neighborhood of Las Condes, as well as at the Santiago headquarters of Renovación Nacional, a party of which he was co-founder and with which he came to power.
A tireless politician and successful businessman, with one of the largest fortunes in the region, Piñera became in 2020 the first right-wing president to reach La Moneda after the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990).
Boricwhich in the past maintained strong differences with pineappleespecially as a result of the social outbreak, defined him on Tuesday in a national broadcast message as a “democrat from the first hour” and said that “he contributed, from his vision, to building great agreements for the good of the country.”
The country’s recovery after the devastating 2010 earthquake, the rescue of the three miners trapped for more than two months in the San José mine, the wave of demonstrations in 2019, the pandemic, the early vaccination against the coronavirus and the opening of an investigation against him for the Pandora Papers are some of the milestones that his two Governments marked.