Mount Kinabalu
A strong earthquake has hit Mount Kinabalu, leaving 11 people dead.Wikipedia

Officials attacked 10 foreigners who "showed disrespect to the sacred mountain", Mount Kinabalu, by stripping off naked at its peak.

Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Joseph Pairin Kitingan said a special ritual would be conducted to "appease the mountain spirit".

The tourists who included two Canadians, two Dutch and a German national, left the main group and stripped naked before taking pictures at the mountain peak on 30 May, said officials.

Sabah police say that five of the tourists still believed to be in Malaysia will be barred from leaving the country and charged with gross indecency, according to Reuters.

On Saturday (6 June) rescuers recovered the bodies of nine more climbers from Malaysia's highest mountain peak, a day after it was struck by an earthquake. This brings the death toll so far to 11, although this may rise.

Eight more people are missing on Mount Kinabalu which rises to a height of 4,095m (13,435ft).

An earthquake of 5.9 on the Richter scale hit the region in eastern Sabah on Borneo, sending rocks and boulders cascading down the mountain, trapping many climbers on the trekking routes.

Most of the climbers managed to descend down the mountain by early morning on Saturday, although some had broken limbs. One is in a coma.

Among the dead were a 30-year-old local guide and a 12-year-old from Singapore, said district police official Farhan Lee Abdullah.

At least 17 other people are still missing, including eight Singaporeans, and one each from China, the Philippines and Japan.

The search rescue continues with four helicopters and 60 rescuers scouring the area.

The earthquake also damaged roads and buildings, including schools and a hospital on Sabah's west coast. It also broke one of the famous twin rock formations on the mountain known as the "Donkey's Ears".

"Rocks were raining down fast, like rock blasting," Lee Yoke Fah, a 60-year-old Malaysian who suffered minor injuries, told ABC News. "I am not going to climb again, I am scared."