New York, Aug.23 (ANI): Families of 33 trapped miners have heaved a sigh of relief on hearing news that they are still alive in a mine in Copiapo, Chile, even after 17 days.
The miners have left a note confirming that they are "all fine," CBS News reports Chilean President Sebastian Pinera held up a plastic bag containing a message from the miners trapped in a collapsed mine that read in Spanish "All 33 of us are fine in the shelter" in Copiapo, Chile.
Authorities and relatives of the miners hugged, climbed a nearby hill, planted 33 flags and sang the national anthem Sunday after a probe sent some 2,257 feet (688 meters) deep into the mine came back with the note.
"Today, all of Chile is crying with excitement and joy," President Sebastian Pinera said.
The miners' ordeal may have just begun: Rescuers say it could take four months - until around Christmas - to get them out.
The men already have been trapped underground longer than all but a few miners in recent history.
The miners have survived by drinking underground water, reports CBS News. (ANI)