Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • EU leaders choose Tusk and Mogherini for top jobs, discuss Russia sanctions

    Read more

  • Dozens of UN peacekeepers still held by Syrian jihadists

    Read more

  • Opposition protesters clash with Pakistani police outside PM's house

    Read more

  • Austerity row overshadows French Socialist’s annual rally

    Read more

  • Egypt sentences Brotherhood leader Badie to life

    Read more

  • Ceasfire allows Gaza families to relax on the beach

    Read more

  • S. Africa condemns 'military coup' in Lesotho

    Read more

  • Kerry calls for 'coalition of nations' to battle IS militants

    Read more

  • Ukrainian plane with seven on board crashes in Algeria

    Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns Russia of more sanctions

    Read more

  • IMF backs Lagarde amid French corruption probe

    Read more

  • Ebola drug ‘ZMapp’ heals all monkeys in study

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • Suriname leader’s son pleads guilty to courting Hezbollah

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

Americas

Chile’s Bachelet to run for re-election

© AFP

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2013-03-28

Former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet on Wednesday announced her candidacy in presidential elections to be held on November 17. The country’s first female leader, who governed from 2006 to 2010, is widely tipped as favourite to win the race.

Popular former Chilean president Michelle Bachelet announced late Wednesday that she is running in November 17 election.

Bachelet, the country's first female president 2006-2010, made the announcement at a public event in a southern Santiago neighborhood where she grew up.

Polls show that Bachelet, 61, is the runaway favorite in the race, even though she first has to win a June primary election against three largely unknown candidates.

The ex-president arrived in Santiago late Wednesday after three years living in New York, where she became the first head of UN Women, an office that supports the rights of women worldwide, when it was created in 2010.

"We knew there were things still to be done" when her leftist coalition left office, Bachelet said, "especially to improve the levels of income disparity."

A socialist, agnostic, single mother, Bachelet was a strange choice to lead staunchly Roman Catholic Chile, but her informal political style and personal touch led her to being dubbed "the mother of Chileans."

She left office with an approval rating of 84 percent, despite criticism over the response to Chile's massive February 2010 earthquake, and left behind a legacy of mostly successful efforts to improve the lot of Chilean women.

Born in September 1951 in Santiago, Bachelet studied medicine and joined the Socialist Youth as a teenager.

Her father, an Air Force general, was a close adviser to president Salvador Allende, and was imprisoned and tortured after Augusto Pinochet toppled the socialist leader on September 11, 1973. Bachelet's father died six months later.

Secret police whisked Bachelet and her mother to a torture center in January 1975. The two women were eventually freed, and fled first to Australia and then to East Germany, where Bachelet completed her medical studies.

Bachelet, already the mother of a young son, returned to Chile in 1979 but was prevented from practicing as a doctor by the dictatorship.

She continued studying, specializing in pediatrics and public health and in 1984 gave birth to a daughter. Her third child, Sofia, was born nine years later.

Bachelet studied military strategy in Santiago and later in Washington, and in 2000 was appointed health minister with a mandate to reform the sector. She later became minister of defense.

(AFP)

Date created : 2013-03-28

COMMENT(S)