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Afghanistan avalanches kill 124: Natural Disaster Management Authority

Avalanches caused by a heavy winter snow have claimed lives of at least 124 people in northeastern Afghanistan, a Natural Disaster Management Authority said The Associated Press (AP).

According to Mohammad Aslam Syas, the deputy director of the Afghanistan Natural Disaster Management Authority, the avalanches buried homes across four northeast provinces with worst hit to be Panjshir province, located around 100 kilometers northeast of the capital, Kabul.

The strategic Salang Tunnel, which links the north and south of the country, has been closed in Parwan province over avalanche fears. 

The avalanches occurred in Paryan, Hessa Doyem and Awal districts and Parakh, the provincial capital. The heavy snowstorms, which began early Tuesday, have hampered the rescue efforts.

There was also report of an avalanche in Afghanistan's Badakhshan Province which claimed lives of at least twelve people on Sunday. Deadly avalanches are common in winter season in mountainous region of Afghanistan.