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Patricio Aylwin Azócar

Aylwin Azócar, Patricio (Īlˈwĭn äzōˈkär) [key], 1918–, president of Chile (1990–94). He was a founder of the Christian Democratic party in 1957 and served as a senator (1964–73). In 1989, he became the spokesman for the coalition that advocated a rejection of the dictatorship of Gen. Augusto Pinochet in a national plebiscite. The referendum led to the downfall of the military government that had ruled Chile since the overthrow of President Allende in Sept., 1973. During his term as president, Aylwin strengthened civilian government by confronting Chile's mounting social tensions and the human-rights abuses of the former military government while preserving Chile's strong economic performance.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Chilean History: Biographies

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