The sports club which the missing mountain climbers are members of is directly responsible for not providing them with necessary equipment, said Deputy Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources of Azerbaijan Firdovsi Aliyev.
He made the remarks at a press conference held at the operational headquarters created in connection with the search for the missing mountaineers, APA reports.
Three members of Gilavar Air and Extreme Sports Club - Farida Jabrayilzade (born in 1991), Babur Huseynov (1990) and Namin Bunyatzade (1983) - went missing near a mountainous area in Khinalig Village of Azerbaijan’s Guba district on Dec. 23.
F. Aliyev said that Gilavar sports club is registered at the Ministry of Justice.
"The mountaineers went missing on the territory of the Shahdag National Park, to which entry is permitted only for the purpose of protecting its flora and fauna. Neither the Azerbaijan Air and Extreme Sports Federation nor our ministry is obliged to provide them with necessary equipment,” said the deputy minister.
He noted that over the past decade more than 400 mountain climbers have been given permit for hiking and that this is the first unlucky incident during this period.