Afghan officials said on Tuesday they believe at least 52 people are missing, consisting of mostly women and children, following a landslide disaster in the country’s remote northeast Badakhshan province.
Deputy provincial governor Gul Mohammad Beidar said at least 25 women and 22 children were among those who are missing in Jaryo Bala village of Badakhshan.
"We have asked Kabul for help and they have said they are sending two helicopters to assist with the rescue operations," Beidar told reporters. "This is a remote area on the border with Tajikistan and the road to this district remains closed for six months of the year," he added, by stressing the difficulties faced during the relief effort.
Floods, landslide, avalanche, quakes and other natural disasters are very common to occur in Afghanistan’s isolated mountainous regions where the lack of infrastructure and facilities challenge rescue efforts and increase tolls and casualties.
"We have tasked our security forces to provide any kind of support they can to help victims," Lal Mohammad Ahmadzai, a spokesman for Badakhshan's police chief said.
Badakhshan province is relatively 600 km far from the capital Kabul and the disaster came nearly a year after another landslide that killed at least 300 people by totally burying a village in the wake of heavy rains.