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Dozens killed as heavy snow & rain hits Pakistan, triggering AVALANCHES (PHOTOS/VIDEOS)

Dozens killed as heavy snow & rain hits Pakistan, triggering AVALANCHES (PHOTOS/VIDEOS)
Dozens of people have been killed and many are reported missing after heavy snow and rain hit Balochistan, Pakistan and Pakistani-held region of Kashmir. Bad weather caused traffic disruption on key highways.

In Pakistani-held Kashmir, extreme winter weather claimed at least 57 lives in one day, government officials said, as cited by Reuters. Avalanches stranded many villagers in the region’s Neelum Valley following heavy rain that also triggered landslides. Scores have been reported missing and are feared dead.

Pakistan’s Balochistan province has been hit hard as well; 17 people are reportedly dead after heavy snowfall destroyed several houses. The severe weather also paralyzed highways and led to power outages, as emergency workers scrambled to provide assistance to those trapped in snow-hit areas.

One video shows Red Crescent volunteers trying to help stranded motorists.

Photographs posted on social media reveal villages covered in snow. Aircraft were grounded in Balochistan’s capital Quetta, local media reported. Airport authorities said that they lacked necessary equipment to de-ice planes and clear the runways.

Grave winter conditions caused fatalities in neighboring India and Afghanistan as well.

At least 10 people were killed in several avalanches that hit Indian-held Kashmir. Afghan authorities blamed severe cold weather conditions and heavy snow for causing the death of 39 people in the past two weeks.

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