Good news came for the relatives of the 33 Chilean miners who have been trapped underground for 17 days. The rescue probe which drilled down to 688 meters in the San Jose gold and copper mine made contact with the miners who sent back a written message tied to the probe saying "all 33 of us are well inside the shelter".
The Chilean President Sebastián Piñera read out the hand written during a televised appearance as he said that never have so few words brought such happiness to an entire nation. Mr Pinera watched images of the trapped men looking at a small camera that has been inserted down the drill hole.
Relatives of the miners hugged and kissed on hearing the good news. This is the first they have heard from them since August 5 when the mine collapsed.
However it is still going to take some time before they will be able to see the miners. It will take at least 120 days more for a full fledged rescue operation to be completed. A shaft of 66 cm in diameter needs to be completed as per lead rescue engineers Andre Sougarret.
In the meantime a second note from the miners revealed that they were living in a make shift refuge using electricity from a truck engine. They have also created a canal of fresh water using a bulldozer.