Series of fatal avalanches strike Afghanistan and Tajikistan amid heavy snowfall

aqua modis february 14 2023

A series of deadly avalanches caused by heavy snowfall have impacted Afghanistan and Tajikistan over the past couple of days, causing damage and leaving at least 25 people dead. The avalanches struck mountainous regions in both countries, including the Kunar and Badakhshan provinces of Afghanistan and Tajikistan’s eastern Gorno-Badakhshan region.

At least 5 people were killed and 8 others injured in two separate avalanches in Raghistan District, Badakhshan Province, Afghanistan, while a previous avalanche in Dangam District resulted in the deaths of 10 people and injured nine others in Kunar Province.

In Tajikistan, an avalanche destroyed several buildings in Khorugh, the capital of the Gorno-Badakhshan region, killing 8 people. Two others were killed in Vanj and on a highway between Dushanbe and Varzob.

According to meteorological reports, moderate rainfall and snowfall are expected to continue in northern Afghanistan, which could further increase the risk of avalanches.

Afghanistan and Tajikistan are prone to avalanches and other weather-related disasters during the winter months, particularly in mountainous regions.

The mountains cover almost all of the Central Asian countries’ territories, and avalanches and mudslides are common during the winter season, often leading to fatalities and damage to infrastructure.


1 Avalanches Caused By Heavy Snow Kill At Least 10 In Tajikistan – RFERL – February 15, 2023

2 Avalanches in Afghanistan – DG Echo – February 15, 2023

Featured image credit: NASA Aqua/MODIS. Acquired on February 14, 2023


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