TIME Aviation

Germany Failed to Pass on Warnings Before Plane Was Shot Down Over Ukraine

The catastrophe killed 298 people

German authorities knew of the danger of flying over eastern Ukraine before flight Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down last July but failed to pass on the warning.

Two days before the Malaysia Airlines flight was brought down, the German government was alerted that the situation had become “very worrying,” the Süddeutsche Zeitung reports, citing the downing of a Ukrainian air force plane at a height of about 20,000 feet on July 14.

The German foreign ministry cables noted the plane’s height and its vulnerability as a “new development” to the conflict. Targets including civilian aircraft would also have been endangered at that height.

Flight 17 was destroyed three days later on July 17, killing 298 people, a catastrophe that might have been averted had Malaysia Airlines known of the dangers.

Three Lufthansa planes flew over the area on the day of the disaster. “If the government had warned our companies of this ‘new development,’ Lufthansa would surely not have flown planes over eastern Ukraine,” a Lufthansa insider told the Süddeutsche Zeitung.

A Dutch-led investigation says it is likely that the plane was shot down by a Russian-made missile launcher.

[Süddeutsche Zeitung]

TIME Nepal

U.S. Sends Personnel, Funds to Aid in Nepal Relief Effort

About 70 USAID workers and humanitarian personnel are expected to arrive on Monday

The U.S. government is sending troops and aid to Nepal as the nation struggles to recover from a massive earthquake that killed thousands.

As the days go by and death tolls tick up, the need is only expected to grow. As of Monday, officials say 4,000 were killed in the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck near the capital of Kathmandu on Saturday. The Nepalese government has declared a state of emergency and the international community has joined in the response effort.

Secretary of State John Kerry issued a statement of condolences Saturday and announced that the U.S. would be joining in the effort to help Nepal recover.

“To the people in Nepal and the region affected by this tragedy we send our heartfelt sympathies. The United States stands with you during this difficult time,” Kerry’s statement reads.

About 70 American personnel and 45 square tons of supplies are expected to reach Nepal on Monday, according to the Department of Defense. The bulk of those traveling to the country are members of the U.S. Agency for International Development Disaster Assistance Response Team including humanitarians and rescue workers from Fairfax County.

Secretary of State John Kerry also announced Monday the U.S. government is sending an additional $9 million to aid in the relief effort, bringing the total funds sent thus far to $10 million.

“The images that everybody has seen are gut-wrenching. Extraordinary devastation, young children carried away in ambulances, whole villages reduced to rubble,” Kerry said Monday during a joint-press conference with his Japanese counterparts. “We are working very closely with the government of Nepal to provide assistance and support.”

Read next: See the Most Dramatic Rescue From the Nepal Earthquake

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TIME Sudan

Sudan Finance Minister Pushes Washington to Lift Sanctions

A woman rides a donkey past a convoy of government troops in Tabit village in the North Darfur region of Sudan, Nov, 2014.
Abd Raouf—AP A woman rides a donkey past a convoy of government troops in Tabit village in the North Darfur region of Sudan, Nov, 2014.

Sudanese minister of finance and national economy Bader Eldin Mahmmoud Abbas Mukhtar visited Washington recently to lobby the United States to lift sanctions and remove the country from a list of states that sponsor terrorism.

This is the second time this year that a high profile Sudanese delegation has received visas to visit Washington. Sudanese foreign minister Ali Karti visited in February for the National Prayer Breakfast. Mukhtar was in town for the World Bank-International Monetary Fund spring meetings, and his delegation included representatives from the Central Bank of Sudan.

Mukhtar met with Assistant Secretary of Treasury Marisa Lago and Special Envoy to Sudan and South Sudan Donald Booth on April 18. His goal, he tells TIME, was to move forward on the “improvement of the bilateral relations rather than always talking about domestic political issues in Sudan.”

The domestic political issues in Sudan — including the extensive fighting between numerous government and rebel factions, as well as the government denial of humanitarian aid and mounting allegations of military war crimes against civilians — were the subject of a February feature in TIME, “Sudan: The Forgotten War.

Sudan’s tactics in fighting rebel groups have been widely criticized. According to the U.N., the Sudanese Armed Forces burned an average of about 22 villages a day in Darfur over the first half of last year. In the South Kordofan region, reports of government planes bombing civilian and medical targets arrive regularly. In February, the United Nations Security Council threatened new sanctions against Sudan, and Samantha Power, United States Ambassador to the U.N., accused Sudan of “obstruction, harassment and direct attacks that have impeded efforts to deliver humanitarian aid in Darfur.”

From TIME’s February story: “‘It is not any different than what is happening in Syria,’ says Tom Catena, a U.S. surgeon who runs the only full-scale hospital for the nearly 1 million civilians caught in the Nuba Mountains region of South Kordofan. ‘It just has been going on three decades longer.’” (Catena is one of the 2015 TIME 100.)

Here’s the topline of Mukhtar’s interview with TIME at the Washington Press Club, with his quotes, condensed for length:

He is frustrated with the United States policy on Sudan. “Let me be frank with you,” Mukhtar says. “We have tried a lot to engage with the Americans. … They are always coming with moving political targets. … Our feel is that the object of the American policy towards Sudan is the regime change, not having any cooperation. … We are always trying to cooperate with the Americans … and the international community in combatting terrorism and we are adopting standards of antiterrorism finance in our financial systems and anti-money-laundering. … Instead of being rewarded for that, we have been punished.”

He is unwilling to entertain reports of human rights abuses in Sudan. Mukhtar denied allegations of humanitarian abuse, unethical mining of gold, and exploitation of citizens in Sudan. “This is reflected by some of the activist groups,” he says. (Gamal Goraish, a counselor from the Embassy of Sudan in the United States who was present at the interview, clarifies, “The Enough Project mainly.”) Mukhtar continues, “They are trying to say that a country or a government exploiting the people. What on Earth that a country or a responsible government that is slaying its people, exploiting them, abusing them, violating rights, not respecting them?”

He continues the Sudanese government’s denial of a mass Sudanese military rape of 221 women and girls in the Darfur village of Tabit, reported by Human Rights Watch. “Nobody can say that also government encouraging or motivating people to do bad things like this. Even in our religion in Sudan, this is out of any religion beliefs. … This has been crafted unfortunately even by some of the people inside the UNAMID (United Nations Mission in Darfur), trying to say that government of Sudan is encouraging such bad things. … The people of Sudan are not you see like animals in a forest.” (A woman with the Central Bank of Sudan, also part of the delegation, adds, “No man can treat woman badly, never.”) He concludes, “They talk about the collective raping event which is not true.”

He thinks the U.S. should support debt relief for Sudan, in part due to Sudan’s assistance to the U.S. in fighting terrorism. Sudan’s debt, according to the Embassy of Sudan in Washington, amounts to $43.5 billion, of which $2.6 billion is owed to the U.S. “We are playing a positive role in Libya trying to stabilize the situation there. With our partners there, we are pushing negotiations between the conflicting parties there in order to reach a compromise. … Now the situation in Darfur is much better… this not because the government goes there and killing the people irrationally, the conflict was being caused by the conflict on natural resources, by the nomads and the farmers, this is triggered the instability. … the government is trying to fix the situation, trying to reach compromise.”

He defends Sudan’s high arms import budget. “Buying weapons, a country which is facing lot of challenges, if the rebels started any activity in the United States, do you think that the government just will stay there just to come to power in Washington, or they should defeat them there? If any group of people are out of law… the responsible government should act responsibility to protect the security of the county and to bring security for the people and to prevent anarchy to happen in the country. … This is why we are trying to also strengthen our security capabilities and to strengthen our army. What do you expect us to do as a responsible government?”

The Central Bank of Sudan has approximately $21-24 billion in foreign exchange currency (Forex). “The international reserve is always evaluated in terms of months of imports. Now the Central Bank has about three months reserve of foreign currency and we are trying to build more reserves. Our import bill is $7-8 billion. You can calculate after that.”

TIME royals

Here’s How to Find Out About the Royal Baby First

Prince William (L) and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge with Prince George during a visit to the Sensational Butterflies exhibition at the Natural History Museum in London on July 2, 2014.
John Stillwell—AFP/Getty Images Prince William (L) and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge with Prince George during a visit to the Sensational Butterflies exhibition at the Natural History Museum in London on July 2, 2014.

The second royal baby will be introduced to the world in a different way

Don’t expect to see a palace aide hot-footing it down the famous steps of Princess Kate‘s hospital with news of the royal birth.

That’s because, unlike when Prince George was born, the palace will be sending out the news electronically.

When there is news of the arrival of Kate and William‘s baby at St. Mary’s Hospital in London, a release is set to be emailed to those covering the story. Then, “a couple of minutes later,” an aide explains, the news will be announced on the palace’s social media feeds, including the @KensingtonRoyal Twitter and Instagram accounts.

The information will be the sex of the baby, the time of birth and the weight.

As Kate, 33, and William, 32, and their aides mix the modern with the traditional, there will still be that old-fashioned display of the proclamation signed by the main doctors, led by consultant obstetrician Guy Thorpe-Beeston, posted on an easel in the foreground of Buckingham Palace.

It is the same easel that was used for both Prince George’s announcement in July 2013. The placing of the easel on the gravel by the palace gates will only happen in daylight so, in theory, there could be a delay of several hours between the birth and the actual sighting of the sign. “It will be delivered private to BP after the announcement has been made,” a palace aide says.

The next piece of information will herald the fact that the couple and their son or daughter are leaving the hospital – a moment when the young family will face the cameras for the first time.

The family is expected to stay at their London home Kensington Palace for a couple of days before heading to their country residence, Anmer Hall, around 150 miles north, where they will spend much of the summer.

William is set to have two weeks’ paternity leave from his new job as an air ambulance pilot, for which he re-starts training on June 1.

This article originally appeared on People.com

Read next: Here’s What People Want the New Royal Baby to Be Named

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TIME Nepal

Terrifying Video Shows Mt. Everest Base Camp Hit By Avalanche

Footage of the snowfall caused by Saturday's earthquake in Nepal

A climber on Mount Everest captured footage of an avalanche that killed at least 18 people on the mountain amid a devastating earthquake that has killed at least 3,400 throughout Nepal.

YouTube user Jost kobusch posted the video with the caption, “The ground was shaking from the earthquake and as soon as we saw people running we were running ourselves to save our lives.” The terrifying footage has already been viewed more than 5 million times. Warning: strong language.

About 150 climbers were still stuck on the mountainside Monday morning at higher elevations than the avalanche, CBS News reports. Helicopter rescuers were only able to collect two climbers at a time, in highly unstable conditions.

[CBS News]

Read next: First Survivors of Everest Avalanche Reach Quake-Hit Kathmandu

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TIME Nepal

Where Will the Next Big Earthquake Hit?

Search and rescue team work among the debris of houses after a powerful earthquake hits Katmandu, Nepal on April 26, 2015.
Sunil Pradhan—Anadolu Agency/Getty Images Search and rescue team work among the debris of houses after a powerful earthquake hits Katmandu, Nepal on April 26, 2015.

Where seismic activity meets poverty, you have disaster waiting to happen

For years, seismic experts predicted that a big earthquake would hit the Himalayan region between India and Nepal.

The Himalayas are being pushed upwards at the rate of about one centimeter a year as the Indian subcontinent smashes against the Eurasian plate— a process that has been ongoing for millions for years. As the plates thrust against each other huge amounts of pressure builds up until it releases as an earthquake.

The region experiences a magnitude-8 earthquake approximately every 75 years, with the last in 1934. It killed about 10,000 people.

Though it’s impossible to predict exactly when or where big earthquakes will happen, areas where seismic activity meet underdevelopment and poverty are prone to the most devastation.

“In several places, the higher seismic risk overlaps with places with poor construction,” Hari Kumar, South Asia regional coordinator for GeoHazards International in Delhi, told TIME. GeoHazards is a non-government organization that helps to reduce earthquake-risk in developing countries.

The consequences of substandard building and a lack of earthquake preparedness were seen in devastating force in Saturday’s 7.8 magnitude earthquake near Kathmandu. Scores of structures collapsed and more than 3,600 lives were lost.

Kumar warns that other cities and towns in Nepal, as well as several in India, Pakistan and Bhutan, are at high risk of a similar disaster due to the activity of the tectonic faults underneath them and their lack of preparation.

“It is not as though Nepal didn’t know about the problem, but that it was so huge they didn’t know where to start,” Kumar says, adding that the country lacked the resources and technical expertise to make existing buildings resistant to earthquakes (a process known as seismic retrofitting). “The government was working against time.”

According to Brian Tucker, the president of GeoHazards, the U.S., New Zealand, Japan, Turkey (particularly Istanbul) and Chile are all high-risk countries where tectonic plates are under strain but they have taken steps to prepare buildings and educate the people in order to mitigate the consequences of a big quake.

“Places you would really shudder to think what would happen are Tehran, Iran; Karachi, Pakistan; Padang, Indonesia and Lima, Peru,” he tells TIME. “If you ask me to place a bet on where the next big earthquake would be, the strongest evidence is offshore Sumatra.”

In 2004, a 9.3 magnitude earthquake struck 100 miles off the northwest tip of Sumatra, Indonesia generating a huge tsunami that killed some 230,000 people and cause widespread devastation.

“Padang is much smaller than Kathmandu so it wouldn’t create the same economic or political chaos that one in Tehran, Karachi or Istanbul would cause,” he said, but he stressed that an earthquake there could trigger a tsunami with similar devastating consequences.

Rapid migration from rural areas to cities worldwide has meant buildings in many cities with poor economies have sprung up quickly to accommodate the new influx of people.

“They don’t have resources to rebuild all the schools, hospitals, houses and apartments according to good building practice,” says Tucker.

Assessing the vulnerability of buildings such as schools and hospitals in these places will go a long way in preventing huge human and financial costs when a big quake strikes, he says. But “We need to create mechanisms to reward and incentivize the private sector to adhere to building codes.”

Read next: Here Are Six Ways you Can Give to Nepal Earthquake Relief

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TIME Nepal

China Rushes Aid to Nepal After Deadly Earthquake; Taiwan Is Turned Away

Even with survivors still being pulled from the rubble, geopolitical ramifications loom large

China this weekend rushed a 62-person team to Nepal to help with the ongoing search rescue operation after Saturday’s 7.9-magnitude earthquake. They landed in Kathmandu early Sunday and set to work immediately, according to Chinese state media. The rescuers and a second group from the People’s Liberation Army are both well-equipped to help in the desperate search for survivors of a disaster that has already claimed more than 3,600 lives: Some are veterans of the devastating 2008 Sichuan earthquake, which had a 70,000 death toll, and they bring much-needed supplies.

Not making the trip just yet: a team from Taiwan. Though dozens of Taiwanese were still missing in Nepal, and Taiwan has strong capabilities in disaster recovery and relief, the island was not asked to participate, Vice Foreign Minister Andrew Kao said Monday. (Taiwan NGOs and religious groups do plan to go and Taiwan people have already raised a large sum of money to support the recovery effort.)

It’s still uncertain whether Taiwan’s exclusion is an oversight or a (very poorly timed) slight. But it is clear that a mere two days after the quake, as Nepalis dig barehanded for their loved ones, and families sleep outside in the pouring rain, geopolitical questions loom large. Chief among them is how China’s involvement in the recovery effort could further change the balance of power in the region, challenging India and potentially putting Nepal’s Tibetan exile community at risk.

Tiny, landlocked Nepal is a foreign policy priority for China. Located at the edge of Tibet, the nation of 30 million is a buffer state between regional superpowers China and India. Though India has long seen Nepal as part of its sphere of influence, China has in recent years stepped up efforts to increase its role across Central and South Asia, an effort President Xi Jinping calls the “One Road, One Belt” initiative. (The China-India proxy fight is also playing out in Sri Lanka, as TIME’s Nikhil Kumar recently wrote.)

The “One Road” portion of the project will bolster China’s existing investment in infrastructure and trade. With better road links between Tibet Autonomous Region and Nepal, Beijing will be better placed to access markets in South Asia. China is now the largest player in terms of Foreign Direct Investment in Nepal, overtaking the previous claimant, India. All this, along with China’s massive investment in Pakistan, no doubt has New Delhi nervous.

Another sticking point: exiled Tibetans. Since the Dalai Lama fled to India in 1959, Nepal has traditionally been both a way-station and a refuge for Tibetans fleeing Chinese rule. But as China’s influence has grown, Nepal’s hospitality has waned. A U.S. embassy cable released by WikiLeaks in 2010 noted that “Beijing has asked Kathmandu to step up patrols,” and was providing “financial incentives” to those who apprehended would-be exiles.

Indeed, multiple reports suggest things are getting tougher for the estimated 20,000-strong exile community in Nepal. In April 2014, Human Rights Watch issued a 100-page report, Under China’s Shadow, documenting what they called, “a de facto ban on political protests, sharp restrictions on public activities promoting Tibetan culture and religion, and routine abuses by Nepali security forces.” (In a statement, Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs denounced the findings as “unnecessary meddling into the friendly relationships between the two close neighbors,” but did not rebut specific claims.)

If neighborly sentiment means more aid for those still waiting in the ruble, few will complain. But Nepal has reason to wonder if this assistance will also bring a push for greater control.

Read next: Where Will the Next Big Earthquake Hit?

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TIME Nepal

6 Ways You Can Give to Nepal Earthquake Relief

Nepalese people rest in their makeshift shelter next to a road in Kathmandu on April 27, 2015, two days after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal.
Prakash Singh—AFP/Getty Images Nepalese people rest in their makeshift shelter next to a road in Kathmandu on April 27, 2015, two days after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal.

An impoverished country is struggling to cope

Massive financial support is going to be needed if impoverished Nepal is to rebuild from the devastating weekend earthquake that claimed more than 3,600 lives and flattened buildings, among them some of the country’s best known landmarks. Here’s how you can donate.

1. Save the Children

Save the Children is an international charity that has been in Nepal since 1976 and is therefore in an exceptional position to help after years of operating within the country, Save the Children spokesman Philip Carroll told TIME.

Carroll said that a response team of 24-emergency specialists, including a medical team, had been dispatched to assess humanitarian needs. He specifically emphasized the importance of distributing clean drinking water to prevent water-borne diseases in a country that already had low sanitation standards. They are also distributing hats and blankets for babies, as many families are living on the streets because of the fear of aftershocks.

Also, 10% of funds are going to preparations for future disasters.

To donate to their Nepal Earthquake Children’s Relief Fund, click here.

2. Red Cross

The Red Cross has committed an initial $300,000 of aid as well as 19,000 non-food relief kits which include clothes, kitchen sets, tarpaulins and mosquito nets.

“We do not yet know the scope of damage … People will need considerable support including food, water, medical care and emergency shelter,” said Jagan Chapagain, the director for the International Federation of Red Cross Asia-Pacific said on Sunday via the organization’s website.

To donate to their Nepal Earthquake Relief Fund click here.

3. Global Giving

Online fund-raising platform Global Giving is running a project to raise $1,000,000 for disaster relief in Nepal and has raised over $570,000 so far.

To make a donation, visit them here. If you have a U.S. cell phone, you can text GIVE NEPAL to 80088 to make a $10 donation.

4. Friends Service Council Nepal

FSCN is a Nepalese NGO with over 20 years of experience in supporting disaster relief efforts for disasters in Nepal. They are based in Kathmandu and have about 50 volunteers. Chairperson Surya Bahadur Thapa tells TIME that since the earthquake they have been rushing money, food and tents to people in need.

If you want to give directly to a local charity, get in contact and Thapa or a volunteer will explain how best to transfer money to them.

5. Oxfam

Oxfam, which works in more than 90 countries, has already dispatched technical experts from the U.K. to Nepal and sent a China-based team to assess humanitarian needs in Tibet, where the quake also struck.

Nepal country director Cecilia Keizer stated that Oxfam was “preparing to help provide clean water and emergency food.”

To make your donation to Oxfam’s relief effort, go here.

6. Goonj

Goonj is an Indian relief agency with 11 offices and more than 300 employees. They have set up Nepal-specific donation centers in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Rishikesh, founding director Anshu Gupta told TIME.

Currently, Goonj is readying two trucks of relief material to transfer to Nepal, with more urgent supplies going by air. Gupta will be leading team to Nepal tomorrow. Find out more about their operations here.

For more information about how to donate, visit their website.

Read next: Kathmandu on Edge After Deadly Quake Ravages Nepal

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TIME indonesia

Foreign Drug Smugglers in Indonesia Look Set to Face a Firing Squad Early Wednesday

Activists Call For Stop To Bali Nine Duo Executions
Cole Bennetts—Getty Images A girl holds a candle as part of an Amnesty international vigil for the Bali 9 duo, Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran in a last ditch effort to sway the Indonesian Government to halt the planned executions of the two on April 27, 2015 in Sydney, Australia.

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has rejected clemency appeals

It appears that nine drug convicts, eight of them foreigners, will face a firing squad in Indonesia on Wednesday. That’s according to an Australian news report that claims a local mortician has been instructed to write the dates of death as “29.04.2015” on the crosses that will be placed on the coffins of Christian prisoners.

Indonesian media also report that nine coffins, covered in white cloth, were taken in readiness on Sunday night to the police station in the Javanese town of Cilacap, near Nusakambangan island, where the convicts are being kept and where they will be shot. The death penalties come after President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo rejected pleas from foreign governments and thousands of his own citizens to halt the killings.

Indonesia gave a 72-hour execution notice to the four Nigerians, two Australians, one Filipina, one Brazilian and one Indonesian on Saturday. That time frame, and the dates being inscribed on the crosses, suggests that the executions will take place very early on Wednesday morning — perhaps just after the stroke of midnight.

A Frenchman, Serge Atlaoui, has been given a temporary reprieve pending a legal appeal, which was granted after French President François Hollande warned: “If he is executed, there will be consequences with France and Europe.”

However, no such reprieve has been granted to other inmates, who include Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, Australians who were part of the Bali Nine drug-smuggling group. Their former lawyer, Mohammad Irfan, has alleged to the Sydney Morning Herald that judges asked for more than $77,000 in bribes to give the pair a lighter sentence, and he also accuses Jakarta of political interference — once again putting a spotlight on Indonesia’s judicial system, which is largely seen as corrupt.

Legal appeals are still under way for Filipina domestic helper Mary Jane Veloso and Brazilian Rodrigo Gularte, who has been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. His lawyers rushed to file a last-minute request for a second judicial review on Monday morning.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Nobel Peace Prize laureate (and former East Timorese President) José Ramos-Horta, boxing champion Manny Pacquiao, British tycoon and adventurer Richard Branson and iconic hard-rock guitarist Tony Iommi have joined the chorus of foreign leaders, fellow celebrities, local and overseas activists and ordinary people asking that the convicts’ lives be spared.

Erwiana Sulistyaningsih, the Indonesian maid whose severe abuse at the hands of her employer in Hong Kong threw a global spotlight on the plight of female migrant workers, has asked Jokowi to pardon her fellow domestic helper Veloso, who maintains that she was tricked into smuggling drugs.

Families of the condemned have arrived on Nusakambangan to spend the last hours with their loved ones, as police and military have stepped up security in Cilacap and Nusakambangan. Chan, who was ordained as minister in the decade he spent at a Bali prison, wants to go to church with his family during his last days, said his brother Michael. As his last wish, Sukumaran, who began painting while incarcerated in Bali, has asked “to paint as long and as much as possible,” his brother Chinthu said. One of his latest self-portraits shown to journalists depicts a harrowing image of the artist shot through the heart.

Veloso’s mother, brother and former husband held a banner that said, “Save the Life of Mary Jane!” at Cilacap’s port on Monday in a desperate attempt to halt her execution. Veloso, who supporters say is a victim of human trafficking and whose plight has sparked sympathy from Indonesian citizens, told her eldest son on Saturday, “Don’t think that I died because I did something wrong. Be proud of your mother because she died owning up to the sins of others.”

Read next: Inside Indonesia’s Islamic Boarding School for Transgender People

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TIME

New Jersey Physician’s Assistant Among Victims of Mount Everest Avalanche

An injured person is loaded onto a rescue helicopter at Everest Base Camp on April 26, 2015.
Roberto Schmidt—AFP/Getty Images An injured person is loaded onto a rescue helicopter at Everest Base Camp on April 26, 2015.

Marisa Eve Girawong was 28

American Marisa Eve Girawong has been confirmed as one of three Americans killed during the Nepal earthquake on Saturday. Girawong was climbing Mount Everest with Seattle-basedMadison Mountaineering group when the quake trigged an avalanche on the Earth’s highest mountain.

More than 2,300 people have been reported dead after the 7.9 magnitude earthquake, according to Reuters. There have been dozens of subsequent aftershocks trigged by the earthquake, including one Sunday morning near Mount Everest, reported CNN.

Girawong, who was 28, was serving as the Everest/Lhotse base camp doctor for Madison Mountaineering.

“Eve perished in the aftermath of the avalanche that struck the base camp area following the devastating Nepal earthquake earlier today,” Madison co-founder Kurt Hunter wrote on the company’s website on Saturday.

Girawong hailed from Edison, New Jersey, and previously worked at the East Orange General Hospital, according to the New York Daily News.
Girawong was actively documenting her journey on social media, posting on her Facebook just a few hours before passing. “Day 28 on this arduous journey, snow is falling & my food cravings are at an all time high … Is a crunchy spicy tuna roll with eel sauce too much to ask for?” she wrote.

According to her bio on the Madison Mountaineering website, Girawong completed medical training in 2012 at John Stroger Hospital of Chicago, graduating with honors for Master of Medical Sciences and Physician Assistant studies. She was in the process of completing a second Mater’s degree and postgraduate diploma in mountain medicine at the University of Leicester in the U.K.

Girawong was also an avid indoor and outdoor rock climber, and first became involved in expedition medical training in 2013, according to her bio.

At least 17 climbers were killed in the avalanche, with approximately 37 others injured, reported Reuters.

Google executive Dan Fredinburg was one of the other identified Americans killed in the avalanche, dying of a head injury on Saturday.

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