MOSCOW, Sept. 1 (Xinhua) — More than 500 people, including over 130 foreigners from over 10 countries, were blocked by a mudslide in a mountainous area in the Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria located in southwestern Russia, Russian media reported quoting sources in local emergency services on Friday.
Apart from local residents, some 350 tourists of 49 registered tourist groups in 27 tourist bases, including foreigners, have been cut off by the powerful mudslide from the slopes of the Adyl-Su gorge, according to RIA Novosti news agency.
The blocked foreign tourists are from countries including the United States, Germany, Poland, Slovenia, Malaysia, France, Britain, South Korea, India, Egypt, Bulgaria, Moldova and Ukraine, the agency said.
TASS news agency reported that about 7,700 people could be in the blocked area due to the erosion of roads in the Elbrus region of Kabardino-Balkaria, while Interfax news agency said there were 260 foreign tourists needing help in the zone.
The consulate of the Chinese Embassy in Russia is confirming the involvement of Chinese tourists.
The Russian Emergencies Ministry said on its website that it was controlling “the elimination of the consequences of a complex of adverse meteorological phenomena in the Elbrus region of the Kabardino-Balkaria Republic.” But details were not provided.
The ministry’s division in Kabardino-Balkaria said in a separate statement that a search and rescue operation was conducted in the region, where three cars with five people in them fell into the Baksan river. Two people were rescued, it said.
According to the document, a total of 245 people and 33 units of equipment were involved in the search and rescue operation.
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