Sixteen people – Nine Nepalese, three Polish, three Israelis and one Vietnamese – were killed and as many as 19 others were injured in Mustang district. According to rescue team, the casualty may be higher.
Nepal Army's Alpine Rescue Team rescued 18 trekkers alive from Mustang districts. Nepal Army also recovered the body of four including one Nepali trekking guide.
According to Nepal Army press release, those bodies recovered from Thoranpass include two Polish, one Israeli and one Nepali. "Nepal Army's Alpine Rescue Team with helicopters continue searching the missing person," said press release.
Lies in Mustang and Manag border, the altitude of the pass is 5416 meters. This is one of the popular trekking routes in western Nepal. According to a report, 85 others remained missing after being hit by one of the worst snow storms in western Nepal on Wednesday.
The sudden heavy snow fall in the area is attributed to Hudhud cyclone, that hit southern India recently. Heavy rainfalls accompanied by hailstorms lashed the central and western regions of Nepal for the past few days.
There were 4 to 5 metre snow fall in the area, according to Gopal Babu Shrestha of Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (TAAN).
“This was the worst incident in the mountain region of Nepal involving foreigners in the recent past,” said Shrestha.
Some 85 foreign trekkers have lost contact with the staff of the trekking company in two separate places of Manang and Mustang districts.
Many people might have been killed in the incident, according to unconfirmed sources.
A trekking agency staff quoting a rescued guide said that he had seen some 24-25 bodies lying in the snow. In a separate incident, five foreign trekkers have gone missing from Dhaulagiri area, according to officials.
Nepal Army and Nepal Police personnel including local trekkers have been mobilised to carry out rescue works, he said.
Nepal Army has also launched aerial search through - a helicopter in the snow storm hit area.
However, adverse weather condition and heavy snow fall in the region has hampered rescue works. It was very difficult to establish communication with the missing trekkers and coordinate rescue due to heavy snow falls in the area.