Rescuers save injured British climbers on Pakistani mountain

Tom Livingstone (centre) and John Crook (right) were among the climbers rescued.
Tom Livingstone (centre) and John Crook (right) were among the climbers rescued. (Facebook)

Two British climbers were rescued from a Pakistani mountain after one fell down a crevasse and received a head injury, an offical from the Alpine Club told AFP Tuesday.

The climbers — Alastair Swinton and Thomas Livingstone — were trying to scale Koyo Zom, a 6,872 metre (23,000 foot) peak which is the highest in the Hindu Raj, just one of the mountain ranges criss-crossing Pakistan’s north.

They were descending from the summit earlier this week when “Swinton fell down around 30m (roughly 100 feet) in a crevasse”, the rescue team said in a statement.

“Livingstone managed to miraculously pull Alastair out of the crevasse but reported a serious head injury.”

Two other team members, William Sim and John Crook, had reached base camp before the accident; while a fifth member, Uisdean Robertson, was also in base camp, the statement added.

Karrar Haidri, secretary of the Alpine Club of Pakistan, told AFP Tuesday that Swinton had sustained a head injury but was now stable.

A spokesman from the British High Commission in Islamabad said they had been in “close contact” with the rescue team as well as with the climbers’ support teams.

It was the first time foreigners had attempted to climb Koyo Zom since 1968, Haidri and another local official said — though they failed to reach the summit due to bad weather.

Access to the mountain has been restricted for years as the peak is close to the border of Tajikistan and Afghanistan.

However, cricketer-turned-prime-minister Imran Khan’s government has been keen to promote the nation’s tourism potential, with the government claiming it has eased visa restrictions for many foreign visitors.