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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Everest Expeditions on Ice 

Billi Bierling writes in the Nepali Times: "Mountaineering is always unpredictable because of weather, avalanches and the effects of altitude. But climbing the world’s highest mountain this year has an added uncertainty: China."

As hundreds of climbers are gathering in Kathmandu for climbing expeditions to the south side of Chomolungma, China is exerting pressure on Nepal to ban all expeditions to the mountain during China's olympic year. It seems that Beijing is doing all in its power to avoid someone unfolding a 'Free Tibet' banner at the summit just as the olympic torch gets there.

The cancellations and uncertainty has already cost several hundred people their jobs, at a time when they normally earn most of their annual income, and the people suffering most are the Sherpas. Read more in Billi Bierling's article.

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