Snowstorm kills nine climbers on Nepal peak

Heavy snowstorm and landslide buried the base camp

At least eight climbers killed on Nepal peak: officials

At least nine climbers have been reported missing after a storm swept through their camp on a Himalayan mountain.

Wangchu Sherpa, managing director of Trekking Camp Nepal, who organised the expedition, said they raised the alarm after they had not heard from the team for almost 24 hours.

Thapa, the police spokesman, said weather conditions on the mountain were preventing search-and-rescue efforts.

A rescue helicopter at the scene confirmed seeing eight bodies in the ruins of the camp, but was unable to stay due to bad conditions.

The group, five South Koreans and their four Nepali guides, were trying to ascend Mount Gurja, a 7,193m (23,599ft) peak.

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"It is unclear whether the seventh body found was that of a Korean or Nepali", Budhamagar said.

Kim Chang-ho, the fastest person to climb the world's 14 highest mountains without using supplemental oxygen, is among the dead.

A heavy snowstorm followed by a landslide buried the base camp at an altitude of 3,500 metres when the climbers were awaiting for a fair weather to move towards higher camps, he said.

The Dhaulagiri massif, about 130 miles (210km) northwest of Kathmandu, has been responsible for the deaths of dozens of climbers since the first recorded attempt on one of its lower summits in 1954.

Four climbers have perished on its flanks and a total of 30 have successfully reached its peak - a fraction of the more than 8,000 people who have summited the world's highest mountain, Everest.

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