People Are Taking Selfies At One Of Nepal's Destroyed Landmarks

04/27/2015 02:49 pm ET | Updated Apr 27, 2015

A famous Nepal tourist spot, where at least 180 bodies have been recovered following Saturday's devastating earthquake, appears to have become a popular site for snapping selfies.

The Associated Press photographed a number of visitors to Dharahara Tower, an historic tower near Kathmandu that stood nine stories tall until Saturday's magnitude-7.8 earthquake reduced it to rubble, posing for the camera amongst the wreckage.

dharahara tower
(AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
dharahara tower
(AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

Those helping with recovery efforts pointed out how distasteful it is to insert oneself into an ongoing tragedy for a photo op.

"This is earthquake tourism. This is not right," Pawan Thapa, a 21-year-old business student helping with recovery efforts told The Associated Press. "They are more interested in clicking their selfies than understanding that it is a tragedy."

dharahara tower
(AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
dharahara tower
(AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

Police estimated that about 200 people were trapped in the tower when it collapsed Saturday. As of Monday morning, officials reported a death toll of more than 4,000 people.

The tower, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was first built in 1832 and had already been destroyed and rebuilt once before following a 1934 quake.

Dharahara Tower's selfie-takers are the latest to join a trend that strikes many people as insensitive. People posing at the scene of a fatal explosion in New York in March were slammed on social media and by news outlets, as was a teen tourist who took a smiling photo of herself in front of barracks at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.

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