Rocky moment for Chile's president as he meets Queen

Tuesday October 19, 2010

Since the success of the Chilean miners' rescue mission, President Sebastian Piñera has seen his approval ratings at home rocket.

And he is clearly enjoying his moment in the spotlight.

This week, the Chilean leader arrived in the UK, where he met with both the Queen and Prime Minister David Cameron – and he didn’t come empty-handed.

The 60-year-old former businessman, accompanied by his wife, presented both with a rock brought out of the San Jose copper mine by Mario Sepulveda, the second miner to be rescued.

Mr Sepulverda, 40, took out a bag containing half a dozen rocks from the collapsed mine, which he gave out when he reached the surface.

President Piñera is currently on a European tour, planned well before the mining incident, and will also visit France and Germany.

After speaking to the Queen and Prince Philip for 40 minutes, he was presented with a framed photograph of the pair which had been signed.

Earlier that day, he met Mr Cameron and received 33 bottles of real ale – one for each of the miners.

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