Tajikistan: 16 people feared dead in helicopter hard landing
Up to 16 people, including 13 climbers and 3 helicopter crew, were unaccounted for after a hard landing by the helicopter in the mountains of Tajikistan, the Central Asian country's emergency committee said today. The accident took place yesterday at 11:30 GMT, the committee said. Two helicopters have been sent on a rescue and recovery mission to the crash site, it added. Here's more.
The emergency committee said the climbers were returning from an expedition up the Ismoili Somoni mountain, once known as Peak Communism and the highest mountain in the former Soviet Union. Neither the climbers nor the crew have been identified. The accident comes two weeks after four western cyclists were killed in an attack initially reported as a hit-and-run road accident.
The Islamic State group said it carried out the attack on the cyclists, ramming the tourists with a car and attacking them with knives, but the authoritarian government refused to acknowledge the group's claim.