June 16, 2021

Mountaineers Juanito Oiarzabal and Sebastián Álvaro, trapped in Kathmandu

Juanito Oiarzabal and Sebastián Álvaro.

Juanito Oiarzabal and Sebastián Álvaro.

Sebastian Alvaro, adventurer and writer-director of “Al filo de lo Imposible” for 27 years, and Juanito Oiarzabal, sixth mountaineer in history to conquer the 14 eight thousand of the earth, they are trapped in Kathmandu, a city closed by the pandemic of coronavirus and they ask for “immediate action from the” consular, foreign affairs and CSD authorities to leave Nepal as soon as possible.

Álvaro and Oiarzabal, who are in Nepal, where they arrived on April 23 to carry out a series of routes related to a documentary on the life of the Basque mountaineer, they find themselves “in the midst of a chaos that can be aggravated by the descent of all expeditions to the capital.”

“Please let the authorities start moving because, it seems, at the moment they are not very alive, they are going to see them coming and we want them to get moving to get out of here. Besides, the expeditions end in 5 days, they will all come down from Everest and rest of the mountains and Kathmandu is going to turn into even worse chaos“Sebastián Álvaro tells EFE from the Nepalese capital.

The 70-year-old adventurer from Madrid describes the current situation in relation to the pandemic.

“The city is literally closed, no store open, police are on patrol, it’s a ghost town. At the same time, the situation of the pandemic is very bad, and the worst thing is that they have prolonged the closure until May 31, which means that they can hold us hostage for a month in Kathmandu, “he explains.

In greater detail, Sebastián Álvaro assures: “Sanitary conditions are practically non-existent, there is a lack of oxygen in hospitals and this has really become a matter for our consular authorities in Spain and Europe to start up and try to get us out of here, on a charter flight to Dubai or Istanbul, and that we can get home. ”

Sebastián Álvaro and Juanito Oiarzabal left Madrid on April 22 with the plan of trekking in the high area of ​​the great Himalayas, around Everest, Cho Oyu, Makalu and Lotse.

· Everything went well, although the weather was bad, it has been a horrible year of bad weather. None of that influenced, But suddenly the pandemic got out of hand in Kathmandu and the authorities closed the airport, “he says.

Faced with the serious situation caused by COVID-19, the Government of Nepal decided last Tuesday extend the suspension of international flights, that he decreed a few days ago, until next May 31.

The country is in the middle of the expeditions to the “eight-thousand” and ‘trekkings’ of mountain fans all over the country. This year has also been the one that has been granted the most permits to carry out expeditions to Everest.

There are several dozen Spaniards who are in Nepalese territory, without the possibility of returning. Apart from Álvaro and Oiarzábal, there are numerous expeditions in different mountains in the area, such as those of Carlos Soria, Jonathan García and Stefi Troguet in Dhaulaghiri or those carried out by ÁLex Txikón or Kilian Jornet on Everest.


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