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16 Oct, 2007 12:26

Three Russians trapped in Himalayas

Rescuers in India are searching the Himalayas for three Russian tourists missing in the world's highest mountain range. They were trekking in a group through the northern state of Uttarakhand, when weather conditions deteriorated.

According to Vyacheslav Topchyan, a spokesman from the Russian Embassy in New Delhi, on October 13, police brought two Russians, one of them in a severe condition, to the embassy.

Aleksandr Likhachev and Mikhail Zotov were detained for traveling without necessary papers and were later sent back to Russia.

The tourists said they had come to India with three other Russians and on September 27 started a hiking trip in the Himalayas.  

They had no special training, and travelled without notifying any travel agency. The inexperienced team got trapped in the mountains because of heavy snow. Two of them felt ill and Likhachev with Zotov went to find help in the nearest Gastoli village, where they were detained by the police.

The two who felt ill and the person who stayed with them are in the mountains around 4,900 metres high. Rescue work is complicated by extremely bad weather conditions: it has snowed hard for two days,” says the Russian embassy’s spokesman.