All women team to scale Everest

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Kathmandu, Feb 15 (UNI) A team of ten Nepalese women, between the age of 17 to 31 years, is planning to scale Mount Everest this season.

The United Nations World Food Programme and the United Nations Development Programme in Nepal has pledged support for the First Inclusive Women Sagarmatha Expedition 2008.

The expedition is one of its kind ever since Mt. Everest was conquered by Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary in May 1953.

The expedition would accrue a total expenditure of over 200,000 US dollars and the two UN organisations have together raised nearly one-quarter of the cost for the expedition.

''As climbers and mountaineers, the FIWSE 2008 team is also very concerned about the effects of global climate change on Nepalese people and their livelihoods, and its impacts on one of the Nepal's greatest resources-- the Himalayas,'' said Da Gombu Sherpa, the team leader.

''When the expedition members were younger, several of the expedition members received support from WFP feeding programmes and we are proud that they have grown into strong adults ready to take on one of the greatest challenges on earth, to climb Mount Everest,'' said WFP Country Representative Richard Ragan.

UNDP country representative Anne-Isabelle Degryse-Blateau said they expected this team to bring back updated information of the major changes, which have been observed in the past years, from the bottom to the top of the Sagarmatha.


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