Cowen congratulates Chile on rescue operation

Taoiseach Brian Cowen has written to the President of Chile Sebastian Pinera describing the rescue of 33 miners trapped underground for 68 days as "extraordinary and inspirational".

Mr Cowen said the successful rescue mission showed the power of human endurance and the strength of the impulse to reach out to those in difficulty.

He has also written to the CoClare-based firm, Mincon, that designed and manufactured the drill used to gain initial access to the miners.

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