20 dead as passenger train hits freight train in Pakistan

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Pakistani officials and volunteers work at the train crash site in Rahim Yar Khan, Pakistan (Waleed Saddique/AP)

A passenger train has rammed into a freight train at a railway station in southern Pakistan, killing at least 20 people and injuring 74 others.

The freight train was stationary when the speeding passenger train hit it at Walhar Railway Station in Rahim Yar Khan, in the eastern Punjab province.

Jamil Ahmed, an official in the provincial government, said hospitals have declared an emergency.

Twenty people were killed in the train crash and 74 were wounded, with some in a critical condition.

Pakistan Train Crash
A passenger train rammed into a freight train in southern Pakistan (Waleed Saddique/AP)

Prime Minister Imran Khan ordered authorities to provide the best possible medical care to the victims.

In a statement, he said he was saddened by the news.

Mr Khan ordered railways minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad to “take emergency steps to counter decades of neglect of railway infrastructure” and ensure safety standards.

Authorities said Pakistan’s army was also taking part in the rescue efforts.

Train accidents are common in Pakistan mainly because of poor railway infrastructure and negligence of railway authorities.