Himalayan Avalanche Kills 6 at Indian Army Post

The Associated Press
Published: November 18, 2019
In this July 19, 2011, file photo, Indian army soldiers undergo a training session at the Siachen base camp, in Indian Kashmir on the border with Pakistan.
(AP Photo/Channi Anand, File)

At least six people died when an avalanche hit an Indian army post on a Himalayan glacier in the disputed Kashmir region on Monday, army officials said.

The avalanche struck in the northern portion of the Siachen Glacier at a height of some 18,000 feet. Army spokesman Lt. Col. Abhinav Navneet said rescuers pulled six soldiers and two porters from the snow.

The victims were airlifted to a military hospital, where four of the soldiers and both porters died, Navneet also said. Treatment was ongoing for the two surviving soldiers, he added.

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The group was on patrol near the post when the area was hit by the avalanche, Navneet said. The post was also hit by the avalanche but there were no reports of injuries there.

The glacier is on the northern tip of the divided Kashmir region claimed by India and Pakistan in an area known as the world's highest battlefield.

The two countries have had troops deployed there since 1984 at elevations of up to 21,982 feet.

There have been intermittent skirmishes since then, but more soldiers have died from harsh weather than from combat.

In 2017, at least 20 Indian soldiers were killed in three avalanches. In 2012, an avalanche in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir killed 140 people, including 129 Pakistani soldiers.

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