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Three French tourists die while mountain climbing in Wadi Rum

By Hana Namrouqa - Mar 08,2014 - Last updated at Mar 08,2014

AMMAN –– Three French tourists fell to their deaths on Saturday while mountain climbing in Wadi Rum, according to the Civil Defence Department (CDD).

A 32-year-old man and two women, aged 35 and 40, plunged 200 metres while climbing a 1,500-metre high mountain in the Um Rumaileh area in Wadi Rum, some 300 kilometres southwest of the capital, a CDD officer told The Jordan Times over the phone on Saturday.

“The incident took place around 11:30am on Saturday. Investigations are under way to identify the cause of the unfortunate incident,” added the CDD official, who requested anonymity.

He noted that the three tourists were found on a cliff.

“The team of paramedics faced a hard time reaching the site of the accident because of the mountainous terrain. The three tourists were... transported on stretchers for 300 metres before reaching the ambulance,” the CDD officer said.

The bodies of the victims were taken to the Wadi Rum Health Centre for forensic examination and then transferred to Prince Hashem Military Hospital in Aqaba, located 58 kilometres south of Wadi Rum.

“The bodies of the French tourists are expected to be flown to Amman by Saturday evening,” he added.

Meanwhile, Tourism Minister Nidal Katamine expressed his regret over the death of the French tourists, noting that they fell after their rope was cut.

In a statement carried by the Jordan News Agency, Petra, Katamine said the tourists arrived in Jordan individually and went on the climbing expedition without a guide.

“It is very important for tourists to coordinate with the related authorities when planning adventures in the country, especially climbing,” Katamine was quoted by Petra as saying.

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