Six teenage boys go missing in East Siberia avalanche

Reuters News
Posted: Mar 03, 2013 9:48 AM

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Six teenage boys were missing after an avalanche on a remote mountain slope in Russia's East Siberian republic of Tyva, the local Emergency Ministry said on Sunday.

One survived the accident near the village of Mugur-Aksy close to the Mongolian border, some 5,000 km (3,100 miles) south east of Moscow, and alerted rescue teams.

Russia's Children's Rights Commissioner Pavel Astakhov said that the teenagers, aged 14-18, were climbing the mountain to leave small flags there, something believed to bring happiness, according to a local popular legend.

"The tragedy happened because of the reckless venture undertaken by the boys," he wrote on his Twitter page @RFdeti. "Now we are trying to find out where their parents are."

Dozens of rescue workers and a helicopter were searching for the missing boys, the ministry said.

(Reporting by Alexei Anishchuk; Editing by Louise Ireland)