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Bad weather halts search for missing climbers on Pakistan's occupied K2

 Hopes were dashed on Wednesday by three climbers lost on Pakistan's brutal K2 when bad weather halted search operations on the world's second-highest mountain.

Climbers John Snorri of Iceland, Juan Pablo Mohr of Chile and Muhammad Ali Sadpara of Pakistan lost contact with the base camp on Friday, prompting a massive rescue effort that included military helicopters.

Bad weather halts search for missing climbers on Pakistan's K2

Two climbers have already died on the treacherous slopes of K2 since January, and a third climber was lost during an acclimatization mission at a nearby peak.

"No search operation has been carried out since yesterday afternoon," Raja Nasir Ali Khan, minister of tourism in Gilgit-Baltistan, where K2 is located, told AFP.

"The effort will continue as the weather improves," he added.

Karrar Haidri of the Alpine Club of Pakistan confirmed that rescue operations were on hold.

Dozens of climbers had descended K2 in recent months trying to be the first to make a winter ascent to what is known in mountaineering circles as "the wild mountain."

However, history was made when a team of Nepalese climbers reached the top, sparking jubilation at home.

Conditions in K2 are harsh - winds can blow at over 200 kilometers per hour (125 miles per hour) and temperatures can drop to minus 60 degrees Celsius (minus 76 Fahrenheit).

With Pakistan's borders open and few places to go, this winter, four unprecedented teams numbering around 60 climbers have converged on the mountain.

Unlike Mount Everest, which has been climbed by thousands of climbers young and old, K2 is much less traveled due to its harsh conditions.

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