16 Snow-Tourists Die After Being Trapped at Pakistan Hill Station
jpnn.com, PAKISTAN - At least 16 tourists died from the cold after being trapped in their vehicles in northern Pakistan where thousands had come to enjoy the snow, officials said Saturday.
Noting that around 1,000 vehicles were still trapped in the snow, the government had designated Murree, 64 kilometers northeast of the capital Islamabad, as a disaster area.
"For the first time in 15 to 20 years, such large number of tourists flocked to Murree, which created a big crisis," Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, Pakistan's interior minister said a video message.
Ahmed said about 1,000 cars were stuck at the hill station, which was built on a higher elevation than the surrounding area.
He confirmed that 16 to 19 tourists died in their vehicles.
Several platoons of army and paramilitary troops had been deployed to assist the civilian government in the rescue operation, he said.
On Friday evening, the government announced the closure of all roads leading to the small town to stop the influx of tourists.
Prime Minister Imran Khan expressed his shock at the tragic deaths.
At least 16 tourists died from the cold after being trapped in their vehicles in northern Pakistan.
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