Kent

Nepal earthquake: Kent backpacker's family criticise UK support

Matt Carapiet Image copyright Carapiet family
Image caption Matt Carapiet was trekking north of the capital Kathmandu just days before the earthquake

The family of a man missing in Nepal after the earthquake has criticised the level of information they have received from the UK government.

Matt Carapiet, 23, from Kent, was trekking north of the capital Kathmandu just before the disaster.

His sister Christina Carapiet said the family had called the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) several times after it lost his details.

The FCO said it was "in regular contact with the family".

According to the latest figures from Nepal, 6,204 people are known to have died in the 7.8-magnitude quake and 13,932 were injured.

Image copyright BBC news grab
Image caption Christina Carapiet said the family were desperate for news of her brother

Mr Carapiet, a student from Bearsted, last made contact with his family on 25 April, five days before the earthquake, telling them he would be out of contact as he was trekking to the Langtang Valley.

His sister said the past few days had been "unbearable" and the family were desperate for news.

"The Foreign Office haven't been doing what we think they should be doing," Ms Carapiet said.

She claimed the FCO had lost information and also had the wrong details for her brother.

"We really want the government to realise that there are still British people out there, like Matt, stranded," she said.

Ms Carapiet said the family had been contacted on Facebook saying he had been staying at a guest house the day before.

Image copyright Carapiet family
Image caption The 23-year-old student last made contact with his family five days before the earthquake struck

"The next day, the day of the earthquake, Matt was going to go to a cheese factory nearby, and we believe that is only one of the things in the Langtang village that is still intact," she said.

Ms Carapiet said the family were trying to keep positive, and had been relying on Facebook for information.

"Matt's a very clever boy, very resourceful, and I just pray that he's found some other people and he's found some shelter somewhere and he's doing ok."

An FCO spokesman said: "Our teams are working round the clock to assist British nationals and have given practical assistance to more than 350 so far.

"We've deployed two emergency response FCO teams to locate and assist British nationals in remote areas.

"They've assisted eight British nationals who were rescued from Dhunche and who are now in Kathmandu being supported by embassy staff."

He added that the Foreign Office continued to work closely with the Nepalese search and rescue teams, and was providing them with all the details it had on British nationals and their locations.

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