BEIJING (AP) – China has canceled efforts to climb Mount Everest from the side of the world’s highest peak, fearing it would import COVID-19 from neighboring Nepal.
The closure was confirmed in a Friday announcement from China’s General Sports Administration Office, the official Xinhua news agency said.
The move reflects the extreme caution that China has taken in dealing with the outbreak. While China largely controls the spread of the coronavirus in the country, But Nepal is experiencing record numbers of new infections and deaths.
China has issued permits for 38 people, all of whom are Chinese citizens, to climb the 8,849 m (29,032 ft) mountain this spring. Nepal allowed 408 people last year to not allow climbing from either side due to an epidemic.
In Nepal, several climbers reported positive test results of COVID-19 after they were taken down from Everest base camp.
May is usually the best weather for hiking Everest. Points arrive at the summit this week and more efforts are expected later this month as the weather improves. Two climbers died on the Swiss side of the Nepalese side and one American.
China previously said it would set up a divide at its peak and barred neighboring people from contacting anyone on the Nepali side. It’s not clear what to do.
Lukas Furtenbach, an Austrian mountaineering expert guide, said he was calling for the current Everest effort against a team of more than ten climbers from the Nepalese side for fear of the virus.
“We ended our trip today due to the safety concerns of the COVID outbreak,” Furtenbach said in a message from Basecamp. That and die “
Before setting off from the mountains, he had warned that the virus could spread among hundreds of hikers, guides and rescuers who are now camping at Everest base if they were not all received. Immediate audits and no safety measures