MUZAFFARABAD, Pakistan -- Pakistan today called off the search for survivors of last week's devastating earthquake to concentrate on helping the millions left homeless. Aid workers rushed to set up makeshift villages before the onset of the fierce Himalayan winter.
Major Farooq Nasir, an army spokesman, said the chances of finding any survivors in the rubble a week after the quake were ''very slim."
International rescue teams prepared to pull out, and relief workers held mass burials for those found too late.
In Islamabad, police launched a criminal investigation of the builders of an apartment building that collapsed during the quake, killing at least 40 residents. The 10-story building was the only structure that collapsed in the capital.
Supply flights landed at an airfield outside Pakistan's capital, Islamabad, through the night, including a NATO jet that brought in eight tons of blankets, tents, and sleeping bags from Slovenia.
A rescue team working urgently to save a trapped 22-year-old woman in Muzaffarabad was forced to halt operations after a frightening aftershock jolted parts of Pakistan. The woman died before the rescuers were able to resume work.
Saturday's 7.6-magnitude earthquake wiped out entire villages in Pakistan's portion of the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir and killed more than 35,000, including many children buried under collapsed schools. India has reported more than 1,350 deaths in the part of Kashmir it controls.
Thousands of survivors spent a sixth night outdoors. At least 2 million people are homeless and face increasingly harsh weather, according to the United Nations. Snow has begun to fall in some parts of Kashmir.
Jan Egeland, the UN undersecretary-general and emergency relief coordinator, flew by helicopter to the Kashmiri city of Muzaffarabad. Millions of people urgently needed food, medicine, shelter, and blankets, he said.
''I fear we are losing the race against the clock in the small villages" cut off by blocked roads, Egeland said. ''I've never seen such devastation before . . . every day the scale of devastation is getting wider."
The US military was preparing to send a 36-bed Mobile Army Surgical Hospital -- or MASH -- from Germany. A water purification detachment would also be sent, the US military said.
Pakistan's federal relief commissioner, Major General Farooq Ahmad Khan, said the country expected to have 2 million blankets and 100,000 large tents to establish makeshift villages before the onset of winter. The quake wiped out 200,000 houses for 2.3 million people, he said.
About 100 Japanese troops and two military transport planes carrying a helicopter and a power-supplying vehicle left to help with relief efforts, officials said.
A relief team from Britain-based Plan International flew a helicopter carrying water, juice, and milk to villages in the Mansehra district of North West Frontier Province. Team members said people were hungry and panicking.
''Conditions are going from bad to worse," said Dr. Irfan Ahmed, the aid group's health adviser. ''These people don't have any shelter. Also the school has collapsed, and the children were in those classrooms."
Another Britain-based group, ActionAid International, said its workers tried to reach remote mountainous areas but had to get out of their truck and walk because of bad roads and traffic jams.
''The problem is that people are facing a shortage of time," said Shafqat Munir, a spokesman for the group. ''It's cold, raining. People are without shelter. They have food, clothes, blankets, but tents are a problem."
A 5.6-magnitude aftershock yesterday was centered 85 miles north of Islamabad, near the epicenter of Saturday's quake. It shook buildings, but there was no significant damage in an already demolished region.
''People were scared. Even those who were sleeping in tents came out. Everybody was crying," said Nisar Abbasi, 36, an accountant who was camping on the lawn of his destroyed home in Muzaffarabad, capital of the part of Kashmir that is controlled by Pakistan.
There have been more than 60 aftershocks higher than magnitude 5, including one that registered 6.4, and nearly 500 in total since Saturday's quake. Specialists said they could go on for months.
In Muzaffarabad, relief workers wrapped 35 bodies in shrouds yesterday and carried out a mass burial. The ceremony was coordinated by Jamat-e-Dawad, a group linked to Islamic militants that is operating dozens of ambulances in the city and running a camp for quake victims.