China building highway up Everest
- A really bad idea...
China to build highway up Everest
POSTED: 1332 GMT (2132 HKT), June 19, 2007
BEIJING, China (AP) -- China will build a $20 million blacktop highway
on Mount Everest as part of the route for the Olympic torch relay, state
media reported Tuesday.
Xinhua News Agency said the construction would turn a rough, 67-mile
road stretching from the foot of the mountain to a base camp at 17,060
feet, into a paved "highway fenced by undulating guardrails."
Mount Everest, the world's tallest mountain, is 29,035 feet tall.
It said construction would start next week and would take about four
months, and the new highway would become a major route for tourists and
In April, organizers for the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics announced
ambitious plans for the longest torch relay in Olympic history -- an
85,000-mile, 130-day route that would cross five continents and scale
Taking the Olympic torch to the top of the mountain, seen by some as a
way for Beijing to underscore its claims to Tibet, is expected to be one
of the relay's highlights.
China says it has ruled Tibet for centuries, although many Tibetans say
their homeland was essentially an independent state for most of that
time. Chinese communist troops occupied Tibet in 1951 and Beijing
continues to rule the region with a heavy hand.
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