Former Chilean President Sebastian Pinera passed away in a helicopter crash in Chile, according to CNN.
The chopper carrying the conservative billionaire crashed in the Los Rios area of southern Chile, according to a statement from his office on Tuesday.
It was carrying four passengers, three of whom survived the collision and are “out of danger,” according to Chilean Interior Minister Carolina Toha. There was considerable rainfall in the vicinity at the time of the incident, but it is unclear whether the weather contributed to the accident, reported CNN.
The Chilean navy retrieved Pinera’s body from the site of the crash.
Pinera, who was 74 years old, served as Chile’s president from 2010 to 2014 and again in 2018-2022.
A state funeral will be performed for the late leader, and Chilean President Gabriel Boric has ordered three days of national mourning, but it is unclear as of now when this will begin, CNN reported.
The country was already in a state of national mourning owing to continuing forest fires, which are thought to be the deadliest on record and have killed over 120 people.
The Chilean government “expresses its shock due to this tragedy and extends its hug in solidarity to the former president’s family, to those close to him, but also to all Chileans,” Interior Minister Toha said in a statement.
Pinera studied in Chile and at Harvard University in the United States.-ANI