Asia

Kashmir avalanches kill 14 Indian soldiers

An Indian Kashmiri villager walks during heavy snowfall in Gund, some 70km northeast from Srinagar, on January 25, 2017. Image copyright AFP
Image caption The Kashmir region has seen heavy snowfall in recent days

At least 14 soldiers have been killed in avalanches in Indian-administered Kashmir, officials say.

Seven soldiers died on Thursday when their patrol was hit near the Line of Control, the de facto border with Pakistan. Rescuers found four more bodies on Friday morning.

In a separate incident, a nearby army post was buried by snow, killing three soldiers.

Indian and Pakistani troops die in Kashmir avalanches most winters.

Heavy snow has caused chaos across the region, blocking roads and railways.

The two avalanches that killed the soldiers happened in the remote Gurez area.

Seven soldiers were saved but army spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia told reporters that bad weather, including heavy snowfall, had hampered rescue efforts.

The AFP news agency quoted him as saying that no one else was missing.

On Wednesday, four members of the same family were also killed by snowfall in the same area.

Last year, 10 Indian soldiers were killed in an avalanche on Siachen glacier, the world's highest battlefield.

One of them was rescued after being buried in snow for six days but later died in hospital.