KABUL – At least 10 people were killed and hundreds of homes destroyed in a remote area of northeastern Afghanistan after melting snow triggered a landslide, officials said Thursday.
A mountain lake in Panjshir, a province known for its snowcapped peaks north of Kabul, overflowed and sent water and mud cascading over Peshghor village, Omar Mohammadi, spokesman for the disaster management ministry, told AFP.
Villagers using shovels and other tools were desperately searching for survivors in the mud and debris as rescue teams were deployed to the area, Mohammadi said.
“We have deployed everything at hand to help the people,” he said. “Some people are missing.”
Disasters such as avalanches and flash floods often hit in mountainous areas of Afghanistan as snow melts in the spring and summer.
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, who is in Brussels for the NATO summit, said he was “deeply saddened” by the latest natural disaster.
“A number of people have lost their lives” in the landslide, Ghani said in a statement.
He ordered “relevant authorities to provide urgent assistance to the affected people”.
The landslide comes as the country is in the grip of a nearly 17-year war between Afghan security forces and the Taliban.