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Dublin: 6 °C Friday 21 February, 2020

More than 2,000 dead in 'mass grave' after landslide buries entire village

A search for survivors continues today but there is little hope of finding survivors in the 30-metre deep mud.

Afghans search for survivors after a massive landslide landslide buried a village.
Afghans search for survivors after a massive landslide landslide buried a village.
Image: AP/Press Association Images

THERE IS LITTLE hope of finding survivors in a remote Afghan village which was flattened by a devastating landslide yesterday.

The death toll officially stands at 350 but another 2,000 are missing, feared dead.

The United Nations has confirmed that more people have been killed in natural disasters that have hit the country in the past seven days that in all of 2013.

The landslide was triggered by heavy rains in the north-east of the country.

Rescue workers in the mud-encased Aab Bareek village in the Badakhshan province have said it is “very difficult” to recover bodies because of a “very thick layer of mud”.

“There is fear of another landslide. Our assessment team have seen a crack in a nearby hill,” Sayed Abdullah Homayun Dehqan, provincial director of the Afghan National Disaster Management Authority, told AFP from the scene.

They have only been able to find the body of a woman and a man.

“We have started distributing food… but we don’t have enough tents for all the 700 families who spent the night outside. There are around 2,000 people – women, children, elders – without homes.”

The site is now expected to be designated as a mass grave. A memorial service will be organised for later today.

Emergency Situtation

“All the relevant UN agencies – together with the Afghan Red Crescent Society and NGO partners – are already on the ground,” the UN mission in Afghanistan said.

“The immediate focus is on approximately 700 families displaced either directly as a result of this slide or as a precautionary measure from villages assessed to be at further risk.

“Key needs for them are water, medical support, counselling support, food and emergency shelter.”

-With reporting by AFP

Related: 350 dead and 2,500 feared lost after landslide flattens Afghan town

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