Dozens die in Afghan snowstorm

KABUL • Dozens of people in Afghanistan and Pakistan were killed after heavy snow and avalanches over the weekend.

In eastern Afghanistan, at least 50 people died and dozens more were missing yesterday after an avalanche buried a village in Nuristan, said provincial governor Hafiz Abdul Qayum.

"Based on information from district officials, 50 bodies have been recovered and the number may increase," he said.

At least five other deaths from collapsed roofs were reported elsewhere in Nuristan.

Meanwhile, in the northern province of Badakhshan, as many as 19 people were killed and 17 injured due to avalanches, collapsed roofs and road accidents over the past two days, said a spokesman for the provincial governor.

The government is working to reach at least 12 districts in Badakhshan that had been completely cut off, added the spokesman.

Heavy snow also blanketed Afghanistan's capital Kabul.

Meanwhile, in neighbouring Pakistan, at least nine people, including children, were killed by an avalanche in the northern Chitral district, with as many as 14 residents believed to still be trapped in collapsed houses, said district official Syed Maghferat Shah. "So far, the rescue workers have recovered nine bodies and efforts are under way to retrieve more," he said.

REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 06, 2017, with the headline 'Dozens die in Afghan snowstorm'. Print Edition | Subscribe