Search for 4 S. Koreans missing in Himalayas suspended due to bad weather
KATHMANDU/SEOUL. KAZINFORM The search for four South Koreans missing in the Himalayas was suspended due to inclement weather hours after being resumed, Seoul's foreign ministry said Monday.
The four South Korean school teachers, from the central province of South Chungcheong, remain unaccounted for following an avalanche while they were trekking at the popular Annapurna Base Camp in northwestern Nepal on Friday. Three Nepali guides are also missing, Yonhap reports.
Heavy snowfall and rain have been hampering the rescue efforts. Avalanches that occurred at the scene on Sunday forced officials to suspend all search operations.
Nepali authorities resumed the ground and air searches at around 8 a.m. Monday (Nepal time), sending about 50 rescue workers and two helicopters to the scene, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
A helicopter carrying the military rescue team, local police and South Korea's quick response team left the airport in Pokhara, a city near Mount Annapurna, and attempted to land at the site of the accident.
«The rescue operations came to a halt due to inclement weather conditions at 1:15 p.m.,» said the ministry. «Nobody has been found yet.»
Some family members of the missing trekkers boarded another helicopter to see the site of the accident.
An official from Nepal's tourism ministry said Sunday the search could take 20 days as the weather needs to clear for the authorities to start looking for the missing tourists, Reuters reported.
It quoted one of the rescuers as saying that the operations could take even longer because they need to wait for the snow to melt.
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