Japanese climber dies on eighth Everest attempt

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Kathmandu, May 22 (IANS) A Japanese climber, who lost nearly all his fingers in an attempt to climb Mount Everest earlier, has died on his eighth attempt to summit the mountain.

Nobukazu Kuriki, in his mid-thirties, fell ill and was descending on Monday when his team lost contact with him, his team said in a Facebook post.

Kuriki is the second climber to die on Everest in recent days, after a Macedonian national died at a higher altitude on Sunday.

“Kuriki stopped responding to radio communication and we couldn’t see his headlamp when we looked up from the bottom in the dark. The team near Camp two climbed up his route to search for him and discovered Kuriki who passed away due to low body temperature,” the Facebook post said. He had reached 7,400 metres.

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Kuriki suffered serious damage from frostbite during his 2012 attempt on Mount Everest’s West Ridge, losing all his fingers and a thumb. He could use his right thumb for grip but wasn’t able to fully use an ice axe — a critical part of a mountaineer’s safety equipment.

The company which organised Kuriki’s expedition said arrangements were being made for his body to be returned to Kathmandu, the BBC reported.

He had been documenting his journey with video updates on Facebook. His message on Sunday read: “I feel the pain and difficulty of this mountain.”

Nearly 350 climbers have been given permits to climb the 8,848 metre Everest this year, assisted by more than 500 Nepali guides and porters.

–IANS

and/soni/bg

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