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A heroic mountain climber who helped retrieve the body of a missing British hiker is "unlikely" to be alive after disappearing on K2.
Muhammed Ali Sadpara has been missing for four days, alongside two other climbers, John Snorri, 47, and Juan Pablo Mohr, 33.
The 45-year-old from Pakistan had been climbing the world's second highest mountain on Friday with his son Sajid, John from Iceland and Juan from Chile.
However, Sajid, 22, last saw the trio at around noon on February 5.
The group had been at what is considered the most difficult part of the climb – the bottleneck, which is just 300 metres from the mountain peak.
Sajid was forced to turn back due to a malfunctioning of his oxygen mask.
In a heartbreaking piece written on behalf of Sajid for a local media outlet, Geo, he said: "He was excited to become the first Pakistani to summit the unclimbed K2 mountain in the winters.
"Before I left him that afternoon, he said, pointing to the mountains around him: 'God has given Pakistan a beautiful gift. Which is why we, Pakistanis, should be the first to climb this peak.'"
He went on to say: "To be honest, I am still hopeful of his return. My father is a survivor you see. He always has been."
Speaking to the media earlier on Sunday, Sajid said: “I kept the light of my tent on at night thinking they would see it when they return.
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“I think if they search for the bodies it makes sense to continue the [rescue] operation, but their chances of surviving, if you are at 8,000 (metres) in winter for two or three days … are next to none.”
"I’m sure they made the K2 summit and on their way back they may have had an accident, that’s why they are missing," reports The Express Tribune.
Sajid has said the rescue mission must continue to recover the bodies even in the worst case scenario.
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Emergency services have been searching for the trio of men for four days.
Pakistani military spokesman Babar Iftikhar said on Monday: “Muhammad Ali Sadpara is a national hero and an asset for the country.
“The Pakistan army is putting in full efforts to rescue him.”
Alpine Adventures Guide posted a heartfelt messaging on Twitter: "Praying for a miracle."
Ali Sadpara was part of a rescue mission in 2019 to recover the body of a British mountain climber.
Briton Tom Ballard and Daniele Nardi went missing on February 24. 2019, their bodies were found at Nanga Parbat, located in Pakistan's Gilgit Baltistan area.
- In the News
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