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135 People Feared Dead in Pakistani Avalanche

Rescue workers try to find the victims of a deadly avalanche in Pakistan, April 7, 2012.
Rescue workers try to find the victims of a deadly avalanche in Pakistan, April 7, 2012.

Up to 135 people, mostly Pakistani soldiers, are feared dead after a massive avalanche engulfed a high-altitude military complex in mountainous Kashmir near the Indian border early Saturday.

In a statement late Saturday, Pakistan's military said up to 135 people, 124 army soldiers and 11 civilians, were buried under the wall of snow more than 20 meters thick in the Siachen Glacier region, with no sign of life more than 12 hours later. Both Pakistan and India have military outposts in the region, known as the world's highest battlefield.

The military launched a huge all-day search on the remote 6,000-meter peak involving helicopters, search dogs, troops, doctors and paramedics, but the rescue operation was called off late Saturday as darkness set in and the weather worsened. The search is due to resume early Sunday.

Pakistan's High Commissioner in Britain, Wajid Shamsul Hasan, said about 150 people were in the military base at a time of the avalanche.  The base is located in a high risk area where the inhospitable climate and avalanche-prone terrain have claimed more lives than gunfire.

The snowslide hit on the eve of a scheduled meeting between Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Sunday. It will be the first visit to India by a Pakistani head of state since 2005.

Pakistan and India each have thousands of troops stationed in Kashmir, which both nations claim in full. Territorial disputes over control of the rugged, mountainous region have sparked two wars between the nuclear-armed neighbors.

Since 1984, there had been skirmishes along the border until both sides agreed to a cease-fire in 2003.

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Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Dr. abdul ruff
April 08, 2012 1:08 AM
So, all terror strategists are here too. These guys with fake names promote state terrorism.

by: Ali
April 07, 2012 7:17 PM
All I can say is Rest in Peace. and Long live Pakistan

by: Jake
April 07, 2012 6:57 PM
No, a massacre by nature is just that - nothing more nothing less, no hidden meanings, no blaming, no super secret reason, no karma, no no no. Its an avalanche caused by lots of snow and the right conditions plus a trigger. Its called science, not My God is bigger and better than Your God. Grow up and think for yourself.

by: Brian C.
April 07, 2012 5:38 PM
God that's so sad. Every time I turn around there's something new to be thankful for. That's a horrible way to go.

by: Osama
April 07, 2012 5:14 PM
Inshallah, Allah has given them peaceful death. Paki govt would have send them on suicide mission or kill innocents on name of jeehad. rest in peace solders!

by: warren singh
April 07, 2012 4:55 PM
the massacre by nature is a lesson to all war-mongers

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