New Delhi: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Monday expressed grief on the loss of lives in Papua New Guinea following the recent landslide in which around 2,000 people are feared buried as of now.

In a post on X, Jaishankar wrote, "Deeply saddened by the loss of lives in Papua New Guinea following the recent landslide."

"Our thoughts are with the Government and the people. India stands in solidarity with our friends at this difficult time," he added.

The rescuers, following the tragic disaster, have been struggling to find survivors in the remote region.

The landslide occurred in the mountainous Enga region in northern Papua New Guinea on Friday last week and the latest figure is a sharp rise from earlier estimates.

Soon after the disaster occurred, the United Nations confirmed that as many as 100 people may have died.

However, it was later revised up to 670, according to estimates from the Chief of Mission for the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in the country, CNN reported.

But that may now be a major underestimate, according to the latest projection from Papua New Guinea's disaster agency.

"The landslide buried more than 2000 people alive, caused major destruction to buildings, food gardens and caused major impact on the economic lifeline of the country," Lusete Laso Mana, Acting Director of the National Disaster Centre, said in a letter to the UN.

"The situation remains unstable as the landslip continues to shift slowly, posing ongoing danger to both rescue teams and survivors alike," he said, adding that the main highway to the area had been completely blocked by the landslide.

The landslide hit the remote village of Kaokalam, about 600 kilometres (372 miles) northwest of the capital Port Moresby, at approximately 3 am local time on Friday, leaving a scar of debris that humanitarian workers said was as big as four football pitches.

Over 150 houses in Yambali village were buried in debris, according to the officials.

The area continues to pose an "extreme risk," officials added, as rocks continue to fall and the ground soil is exposed to constant increased pressure.

Notably, Papua New Guinea is home to around 10 million people. Its vast mountainous terrain and lack of roads have made it difficult to access the affected area.

(With Inputs From Agencies)