A Chilean judge has ordered the remains of poet and Nobel laureate Pablo Neruda be exhumed as part of a probe into whether he died of cancer or was killed by agents serving Augusto Pinochet.

The leftist poet, who died 12 days after the 1973 military coup that ousted socialist president Salvador Allende and brought General Pinochet to power, is believed to have died of prostate cancer.

But in 2011 officials started looking into the possibility he was poisoned by agents of the Pinochet regime, as claimed by Neruda's driver and aide.

Neruda is best known for his love poems as well as his Canto General, an epic poem about South America's history and its people.

A senior member of Chile's Communist Party, his writings were banned during Pinochet's military dictatorship, which ended in 1990.

An exhumation date will be decided in March.

Chile court orders exhumation of poet Neruda - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

I downloaded the movie Il Postino a few months ago but have not been able to find good subs for it yet (2 CD set).