Avalanches Claim Five Lives In Tajikistan

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DUSHANBE At least five people have been killed in snow avalanches in Tajikistan this week, officials said.

Emergencies Committee spokeswoman Umeda Yusufova told RFE/RL that a large snow avalanche killed 64-year-old Azkrizobek Muzofirshoev and his 41-year-old son, Maftulbek Muzofirbekov, in the Ishkoshim district of the Gorno-Badakhshan region, on January 17.

One more person was hospitalized with serious injuries, Yusufova added.

According to Yusufova, three others were killed in avalanches in the region earlier this week, with two more reported missing.

Authorities said all major roads and highways in the mountainous region remain closed after more than two dozen avalanches in the area since January 14.

Elsewhere, officials said heavy snow triggered eleven avalanches in the northern Sughd region, with no casualties reported.

Mountains cover 93 percent of the Central Asian nation, and avalanches and mudslides kill dozens of people every year.

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