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3 killed, 6 injured as copter crashes near Mt Everest

A helicopter that was flying to pick up climbers in the Mount Everest area crashed near the base camp.

india Updated: May 28, 2003 18:09 IST

At least three people died and six were injured when a helicopter crashed near the Mount Everest base camp in Nepal on Wednesday, an army officer said.

The Russian-built Mi-17, owned by private Simrik Airlines, was carrying nine people, including a crew of four, to the camp when it crashed. The dead were all Nepalese, he said.

Airport officials could not confirm any deaths.

The cause of the crash and the nationalities of the injured were not immediately known.

More than 1,000 people are at the base camp, part of more than 20 expeditions trying to climb the world's highest mountain, 8,850 metres tall, for Thursday's 50th anniversary of the first ascent.

The base camp itself is at 5,350 metres and most people trek for days through the mountains to reach it.

First Published: May 28, 2003 13:18 IST