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The body of Chile’s Nobel Prize winning poet Pablo Neruda is due to be exhumed in an attempt to determine the cause of his death in 1973.

The writer died at the age of 69, 12 days after General Augusto Pinochet came to power following a coup.

His former assistant and driver Manuel Araya claims Neruda was given a lethal injection in hospital.

Neruda’s death certificate says he died of prostate cancer.

Speaking outside Neruda’s Isla Negra beach house Araya pondered on the outcome:

“I am not sure if we will get a result there have been several cases like this that still have to be clarified. So we will wait the 60 or 90 days it takes for the result to come through.”

Neruda, a Communist, was set to go into exile in Mexico where its believed he was due to launch the opposition to the military dictatorship in his country.

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