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Avalanche buries 124 Pakistan soldiers; chances of survival slim


Pakistan

Avalanche buries 124 Pakistan soldiers; chances of survival slim

More than a day after a 25 metre deep avalanche buried a Pakistani army battalion headquarters in the Himalayas, officials said on Sunday there was still no sign of survivors.

As many as 124 soldiers and 11 civilians were at the garrison at the time of the avalanche. Authorities said the chances of surviving the disaster are slim.

The deadly avalanche happened near the Siachen glacier, 6000 metres above sea level in the disputed Kashmir region on the border with India.

A search and rescue team was deployed to the area but was working in one of the most unforgiving environments on earth, described as “the world’s highest battlefield”.

India and Pakistan have fought over the wider disputed region of Jammu and Kashmir for decades and have as many as 20,000 troops stationed in the mountains above the glacier.

Authorities said despite the high risk of avalanches in the area, no similar disaster has taken place in the 20 years the headquarters had been based there.

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