Afghanistan: Deadly landslide in Badakhshan

Published: 3 May 2014 22:42 CET

A catastrophic landslide has covered an area near the village of Abi-Barak in the province of Badakhshan on 2 May, in the North-East of Afghanistan.

Following heavy rain in recent weeks, an entire side of a mountain collapsed and trapped hundreds of villagers. Initial reports from official sources say 350 are confirmed dead, but many more are still missing.

The government has reported that hundreds of families are at serious risk of further landslides in the same area.

The region was seriously affected by flash floods in the past few weeks. An emergency humanitarian response operation was already under way due to the floods and will be expanded to assist those who have been affected by this latest tragedy. Resources are expected to be drawn in from relief items already prepositioned in the area. 

The most immediate need is resources to assist with search and rescue, but there is also a critical need for food, emergency shelter, drinking water, and first aid.

The Afghan Red Crescent Society has deployed an emergency team along with two mobile medical teams to the area. Each mobile medical team is composed of four members: a doctor, pharmacist, nurse or vaccinator and a driver. 

On the ground, they are supported by volunteers specialized in community-based health and emergency first aid. Some  temporary shelters have also been erected and 50 families are now living in tents. Kitchen-sets, hygiene-kits and blankets are being sent to the area.

More rain has been forecast for the region in the coming days and may hamper the operations.