Chilean President Offers Help to China’s Trapped Miners

By Dialogo
October 19, 2010

The Chilean people wait impatiently for president Sebastián Piñera to institute the labor reforms within the mining industry and to hurry up with the regulation of the San Esteban Mine…we count on his promise…

Chilean President Sebastian Piñera offered to help China with its latest
mining disaster as he began a trip to London on 16 October , saying his country had
learnt lessons from its own mining crisis.

“I hope that the Chinese workers that have suffered an accident, and
also in Ecuador, will be able to come back to life,” Piñera told reporters
outside his hotel in London, where he arrived earlier at the start of a European

“And if we can be of any help, they know that they can count on

Rescue attempts were underway Saturday in central China to free 16 miners
trapped underground following a coal mine accident that killed 21 of their
colleagues. Meanwhile in Ecuador, four men were trapped in a gold mine.

Piñera said his country had learnt lessons from the disaster-turned-tragedy
that occurred in the San Jose mine in far northern Chile, where 33 miners were
trapped for two months before miraculously being pulled out alive this

“We have a lot to learn from this accident and one of the lessons is
that we have to be much more careful and committed with the safety, lives, and
health of our workers,” he told reporters, flanked by his wife, Cecilia

The president is due to meet with new British Prime Minister David Cameron
— who he said was “very good for England” — and Queen
Elizabeth II on Monday, and will present them with gifts including rocks from the
San Jose mine.

“Also we are bringing the gratitude of all the Chileans because we
received a lot of help from our friends around the world,” he

The president will also find time to do some sightseeing, and has planned a
trip to the British Museum as well as to memorials of wartime premier Winston
Churchill, who Piñera has said he greatly admires.

The London visit is the start of a European trip that will also include stops
in Paris, where Piñera will meet President Nicolas Sarkozy, and Berlin, where he
will have talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel.