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Climbing Activity Monitoring Committee denounces baseless news

Posted by:  | Date: May 22, 2008

The Sagarmatha, Nuptse and Lhotse Climbing Activity Monitoring Committee (SNLCAMC) has denounced news report published in www.stuff.co.nz about the alleged 'extortion by the Nepalese soldiers in the Everest Base Camp. The news report is blatantly misleading, the committee has said. Issuing a press release, SNLCAMC said that the Nepal Army has been working to enforce the policy of the Government of Nepal in coordination with these five associations and the Nepal Police as Joint Security Forces. 'The Everest Base Camp lies within ?Sagarmatha National Park? and it is to bring to everyone?s notice that the Nepalese Army is deployed by the Mandate of the Government of Nepal to protect the National Park since the establishment of the National Park itself. The presence of the Nepalese Army in the Everest Base Camp is just an extension of its duties here as per the mandate of the Government of Nepal to check any Anti Chinese Movement in regard with the Nepal?s policy of ?One China?,' the press release reads. The mandate of the Joint Security Forces is to allow climbing up to Camp Two by May 10, 2008 and further assist the Climbers in their expeditions. The Joint Security Forces treat the climbers with respect because they are aware that they are all potential Summiteers and not ?potential terrorists? as alleged. 'New Zealand's leading Mt. Everest expedition organizers has paid US $ 2000 to feed Nepalese soldiers, who are threatening to shoot climbers who disobey orders,' reads the news report carried by www.staff.co.nz on May 5, 2008. It further quoted Guy Cotter, managing director of Adventure Tours as saying the payments were 'extortion'. However, another news report carried by the same news portal on May 7, 2008, quoted Cotter that armymen at Everest Base Camp hadn't demanded any money. 'Mike (Expedition Leader of the New Zealand Expedition team) told me that contrary to what I reported on Monday (May 5), where I'd suggested that money was being extorted from the teams by the military, that this wasn't actually the case,' Cotter was quoted in the news report. 'It is also to It is also to highlight that there are 41 Expeditions from all over the world hoping to summit the top of the world in Spring 2008 and we are extremely grateful to all the teams for their whole-hearted support, cooperation and understanding they have shown,' reads the release issued by SNLCAMC. The SNLCAMC, consisting five adventure based tourism associations: Trekking Agencies' Association of Nepal (TAAN), Himalayan Rescue Association (HRA), Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA), Everest Summiteers' Association (ESA) and Nepal Mountaineering Instructors' Association (NMIA), has been coordinating with the expedition teams at Base Camp and Camp II of Mt. Everest.

 

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