[QODLink]
Central & South Asia
Dozens killed in Afghanistan avalanche
Army helicopters sent to Badakhshan, a province on the Tajikistan border, where an entire village is buried under snow.
Last Modified: 06 Mar 2012 17:52

At least 42 people have died in an avalanche that hit a village in northeastern Afghanistan, local officials say.

Hundreds more remained trapped on Tuesday under the snow, according to the officials.

The avalanche covered at least one village in Badakhshan province, near the border with Tajikistan.

Afghan army helicopters descended on the north of Badakhshan to try to rescue the trapped families.

Afghanistan's harshest winter in 15 years has led to the deaths of 24 children in IDP camps around Kabul

Six people injured in the snow were evacuated to neighbouring Tajikistan for emergency medical treatment.

Hundreds of household animals perished and a number of houses are said to be destroyed in Tuesday's avalanche, according to Afghan media outlets.

"The way to the village is closed, it is covered in snow," Abdul Marof Rasikh, spokesman for Badakshan's governor, said of the village of about 300 people accessible only via helicopter, located in the Shekay district.

According to the Pajhwok news service, a hundred residents of nearby villages were the first to reach the site.

The residents launched a rescue effort with their bare hands and shovels, officials told the local outlet.

Rasikh told Al Jazeera that it is believed the entire village has been buried under snow.

Freezing cold and avalanches have already claimed the lives of 60 people in Badakhshan this winter.

Among them were 35 children who died over two days in late February after roads to districts were blocked by heavy snow.

Elsewhere in the country, the harshest Afghan winter in 15 years has led to the deaths of 24 children in camps for internally displaced people (IDPs) in the slums on the outskirts of the capital, Kabul.

Source:
Al Jazeera and Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
US drones in Pakistan have killed thousands since 2004. How have leaders defended or decried these deadly planes?
Residents count the cost of violence after black American teenager shot dead by white Missouri police officer.
EU's poorest member state is struggling to cope with an influx of mostly war-weary Syrian refugees.
Study says tipping point reached as poachers kill 7 percent of African elephants annually; birth rate is 5 percent.
Zimbabwe's leader given rotating chairmanship of 15-member nation bloc a year after he won disputed presidential polls.
join our mailing list