Eight Koreans missing after flooding in India

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Eight Koreans missing after flooding in India

Eight Koreans remain unaccounted for in northern India after flash floods last week left hundreds of people dead or missing, the foreign ministry here said Monday.

A ministry official said four male hikers from Incheon Alpine Federation were missing in the mountains, and four other tourists have yet to be located.

The official said the mountaineers had gone trekking on the 6,400-meter (21,000-foot) Kang Mountain on Aug. 2, south of Leh, in India-controlled Kashmir. The four other travelers were not immediately identified.

About 100 South Korean tourists were reported stranded in Leh on Sunday. Foreign ministry spokesman Kim Young-sun said Monday that they were confirmed to be safe and that a consul had arrived in the area to handle administrative procedures.

A ministry official said 34 Korean tourists were to fly out of Leh to Delhi and other safer regions of India later Monday.

The ministry had decided to confirm the status of the Koreans stranded in the area through the consulate. Local police and accommodations have been cooperating with the consulate’s efforts. The ministry is planning to move the Korean tourists, who are willing to leave, out of the country as soon as identification is completed.

“Conditions have improved to a point that the airport in Leh is back to its normal operations, and tourists are leaving the area,” the official said.

More than thirty Korean tourists have already chosen to evacuate to another area, rather than leave altogether.

According to local news reports, the death toll from flash floods reached 150 by mid-Monday and was rising, with hundreds of others missing in the remote Indian Himalayan region.

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