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Avalanche buried a village in Afghanistan, 42 feared dead

Kabul, Mar 7 (): An entire village of around 200 peoples was covered by an Avalanche in Badakhshan, Northern Afghanistan killing at least 42 peoples.

Badakhshan is one of the country’s poorest and most remote regions and is shut off by heavy snow every year. Afghanistan is suffering one of its harshest winters in many years.

While avalanches are fairly common in Afghanistan, this has been the struggling country’s worst winter in 30 in years.

The provincial governor’s office said another six people were injured when the snow hit a village in Shekay district, near the Tajikistan border.

The avalanche covered the village at around 9pm on Monday night when most of its inhabitants would have been asleep.

A spokesman for the provincial governor Dr Shah Waliullah Adeeb, who was visiting a nearby village at the time of the tragedy and was airlifted to Tajikistan, said only six have been rescued.

Afghan officials fear almost the entire population of a remote mountain village may have been killed in the avalanche.

Nasir Hemat, director of the Red Crescent in Badakhshan, said rescue teams had reached the remote site.
“There were 190 people living in the village – 39 people have been killed, six injured,” he told the BBC.
Correspondents say the rescue effort has been hampered because all roads to and from the village are closed. Many more people in the village are missing or presumed dead.

“It is a mountainous area with so much snow,” Shams Ul Rahman, the deputy governor of Badakhshan, told. “My concern is that many more people were killed.”

Some areas in the Badakhshan province are covered less than 13 feet of snow, said. Afghanistan officials had warned back in January that the country’s winter conditions were at emergency levels.

The rescue effort was hampered by the time of the incident, the remote location and continuing poor weather. “It was hard for the rescuers to reach the scene. It is a remote mountain village. the victims were under the snow for nine to 12 hours before the rescuers came,” said Mr Rasikh, provincial spokesman.