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Newsletter July 2005 - Political Situation in Nepal



Once again the ongoing political and security problems dominate the news from Nepal, however, all is not doom and gloom.

The security situation in Kathmandu and the valley is good with life more or less normal for locals, and for tourists, the usual places that are visited are safe and secure. The threat of disruption from strikes and closures has disappeared in the city since the King took over in February 2005 although some demonstrations by the political parties continue in the 'local' areas of the city. Outside the Kathmandu valley in the countryside many regions are affected by the troubles, however, generally there are no specific threats to tourists from the Maoists. Road travel outside the valley does pose some problems for tourists, and for trekking it is necessary to be aware that some regions are more difficult than others. In the Khumbu Everest region, north of Lukla, there is not a problem and this region has remained free of Maoist activity during the 9 years of the troubles.

By starting and ending a trek with a flight there are absolutely no problems. This means trekking in the Everest region is OK. Kathmandu is functioning normally and is safe for tourists. There is no reason for anyone to cancel an Everest trek. Areas such as Annapurna and Langtang require more consideration and careful planning.

During the spring trekking season earlier this year the British and French Ambassador's to Nepal each took part in treks in Nepal (not together I hasten to add!!). The treks were in the Mustang and Khumbu Everest regions. One notable quote from the British Ambassador in one of the local Nepali English Newspapers in Kathmandu read as follows - "The fact remains that not a single foreigner has been kidnapped or killed as a result of the eight-year-old insurgency. During that time, the country has received more than three million visitors. The risk of being a victim of Maoist violence is clearly much lower than the risks of going trekking, mountaineering, rafting, or simply going in a bus," said Keith Bloomfield, 57, the British Ambassador to Nepal. "The threat is fairly small".

Nepal continues to need tourists to visit the country because there is a dramatic down turn in the economy of the country and all the people are suffering because of this. If you have booked with us or if you are considering doing so please continue with your plans and keep in touch with Denis for the latest information from Nepal. If you can be flexible with your travel plans we should be able to arrange a trouble free trip for you.

Generally the areas you would visit during your time in Nepal are safe.

In addition to our usual trek itineraries we also have a number of tours that cover many aspects of Nepal including cultural and wildlife subjects. Tours and treks are also available in Tibet and Sikkim these are linked with Nepal.