At least 10 killed in Pakistan as train collides with rickshaw

LAHORE, PAKISTAN (AFP) - At least 10 people, including two children, were killed on Saturday after a train collided with a packed motorcycle rickshaw in Pakistan's eastern Punjab province.

A high-speed train travelling from Pakistan's largest city, Karachi, to the capital of Punjab province Lahore crushed the rikshaw on a road crossing that had no barrier.

"The accident occurred in Khanpur town of district Sheikhupura, around 40km northwest of Lahore," Mr Salim Niazi, a local police official told AFP.

The rescue officials said that at least two children were also among the dead.

"Our staff are busy in evacuating the injured and dead bodies. So far, we can confirm the death of at least 10 people, including two children," Mr Jam Sajjad, a spokesman for the rescue department, told AFP.

Police said the motorcycle rickshaw was crammed with 16 people and drove onto the train track moments before the Lahore-bound train passed through, smashing into it.

"There was no gate at this crossing, (nor) a man to stop the traffic to clear way for the train," said Mr Niazi.

Pakistan maintains a poor railway system based on British-era track and old coaches. Many Pakistanis avoid travelling by train due to the low safety standards and unsatisfactory facilities.

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