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This Happened

This Happened — October 24: Salvador Allende Elected

Salvador Allende was elected President of Chile on this day in 1970.

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How was Salvador Allende elected?

In the presidential election held on September 4, 1970, Salvador Allende ran as the candidate of the Unidad Popular (Popular Unity) coalition, which was a coalition of left-wing and socialist parties. Although he did not receive an outright majority of the popular vote, he won the most votes, and because no candidate received an absolute majority, the Chilean Congress, in accordance with the country's constitution, elected him as president.

What was the significance of Salvador Allende's election?

Salvador Allende's election was significant for several reasons. It marked the first time a self-proclaimed Marxist was democratically elected as the president of a Latin American country. Allende's victory signaled a shift to the left in Chilean politics and was seen as a mandate for his socialist agenda.

How did Salvador Allende's presidency come to an end?

Salvador Allende's presidency came to an end on September 11, 1973, when the Chilean military, led by General Augusto Pinochet, staged a coup and overthrew Allende's government. Allende died during the coup, and Pinochet established a military dictatorship that would rule Chile for nearly two decades.

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