Nepal’s agitating Sherpa mountain guides on Friday agreed to resume work on Mount Everest following negotiations with the government on their demands in the wake of the deadly avalanche that killed 16 of their colleagues in the worst disaster on the world’s highest peak.
The mountain guides had halted work in the Himalayas for a week to mourn the death of their comrades last Friday.
The Sherpas had threatened to halt work indefinitely to press for fulfilment of their demands relating to increasing insurance coverage, facilities, providing compensation and ensuring their safety in the Himalayas.
After a visit by top government officials led by Tourism Minister Bhim Prasad Acharya to the Everest base camp, the Sherpas have agreed to resume work, officials said.
While discussing with the Sherpas, the minister had urged all the mountaineering teams to continue their climbing expeditions, the Tourism Ministry said in a press release.
“The minister had also urged all concerned agencies to fix ladder and rope. In response to the request made by the minister the supporting climbers have agreed to support expedition activities,” the ministry said.
If some climbing teams want to quit their expeditions for this season and want to extend their permits, the ministry would make necessary arrangement to extend the time of their permit for next five years for the expedition teams of spring 2014,” the ministry added.
The ministry however requested all the teams to continue their expeditions as all necessary arrangements have already been made for the same.
The government earlier agreed to provide compensation to the kin of the deceased climbers, increase their insurance money by 50 per cent to $15,000, bear necessary expenses of the injured climbers and install a memorial of those killed in the accidents on Everest.
Mountaineering is one of the main tourist activities in Nepal and tourism is regarded as a backbone of the national economy.