Turkey: Avalanche kills twenty-three rescue workers

Atta Ur Rehman KhanWeb Editor & Columnist

05th Feb, 2020. 07:19 pm

An avalanche in eastern Turkey killed at least 23 people, including civilians and military police who were working to rescue victims of an earlier snowslide on Wednesday.

According to the sources of Anadolu Agency, Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said 30 people were rescued and taken to hospital.

Mehmet Emin Bilmez, governor of the eastern Van province, said the deceased include civilians, gendarmes, village guards and fire fighters.

Bilmez noted that the condition of nine of the rescued people was critical, while there was still no information on how many people are buried under the avalanche.

The rescue team members had been searching for survivors from an earlier avalanche in eastern Turkey when they themselves were engulfed by snow. The number of casualties from the team is as yet unclear.

Bilmez said that intense search and rescue efforts are ongoing, and 15 ambulances were sent to the region.

The danger of avalanches continues, he added.

“Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) and National Medical Rescue Team (UMKE) members were engulfed in an avalanche while looking for those trapped under snow this morning,” said Bilmez.

At least five people were killed in an avalanche in Van on Tuesday, with two people still missing.

Tuesday’s avalanche took place in the Van’s Bahcesaray district during bad weather and struck a minibus traveling the Van-Bahcesaray highway.

On the other hand Pakistan expresses the deepest condolences & heartfelt grief over reported loss of precious lives due to an avalanche in Van province in eastern Turkey.


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