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Pakistani mountaineer Sirbaz Khan feted for Everest ascent

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Naveed Ahmad Khan

Islamabad:The successful ascent of Mt. Everest by Pakistani Mountaineer Sirbaz Khan was feted at a high-profile reception by Serena Hotels on Wednesday evening. On 12th May 2021, Sirbaz had summitted the world’s tallest peak as part of “Mission 14”, his quest to become the first Pakistani to scale all 14 peaks over 8000 m around the world.

At the event, the phenomenal journey of Sirbaz Khan was highlighted and celebrated. Hailing from Hunza, he began climbing as a mountain guide and kitchen crew member with international climbing expeditions for over 11 years before becoming a professional mountaineer. He tends to use no supplemental oxygen, which is a further testament to his grit and talent.

Serena Hotels has been sponsoring Sirbaz on his expeditions under its Adventure Diplomacy community initiative that aims to encourage and support adventure sports in the Pakistan. Under this banner, Serena Hotels regularly sponsors a number of adventure sports including high altitude marathons, jeep rallies, skiing and mountaineering activities.

“This feat is a source of great pride for Pakistan and for Serena Hotels. Pakistani mountaineers and sportspeople have tremendous potential, however in order to achieve their lofty ambitions they need a supportive environment, for which we all must play our role,” commented  Aziz Boolani, CEO Serena Hotels South and Central Asia, speaking on the occasion that was attended by a number of dignitaries including senior members of the diplomatic corps, journalists and socialites. Mr. Boolani urged the Government and private sector to step forward and support Pakistani talent.

“I am proud of raising Pakistan’s flag on top of the world, for which I thank Allah SWT. My aim is to keep inspiring our mountaineering community by becoming the first Pakistani to scale the 14 highest peaks of the world,” commented Sirbaz as he announced his departure for his next mission to climb Gasherbrum 1 and Gasherbrum II in Pakistan’s Karakoram mountain range.

“Making an international name in mountaineering will help uplift and bring development to the remote areas of the Northern Areas. I dedicate my success to the support of the whole team including the high and low altitude porters, cooks, helpers and everyone from mountaineering community,” said Sirbaz, as he thanked Serena Hotels and other sponsors for their support.

Sirbaz summited Mt. Everest just 26 days after becoming the first Pakistani along with Abdul Joshi to ascend Mt. Annapurna, the tenth highest peak in the world, also in Nepal. His previous summits include Lhotse (8,516m) and Manaslu (8,163m) in Nepal and K2, Nanga Parbat (8,126m) and Broad Peak (8,051m) in Pakistan. He has dedicated his Mission-14 to the memory of his mentor and companion, Muhammad Ali Sadpara, who perished during a climbing expedition to K-2 earlier this year.

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