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First Pakistani women’s team embarks on historic K2 expedition

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A pioneering team of Pakistani women climbers has embarked on a remarkable expedition to scale K2, the world’s second-highest peak.

Known as the “Savage Mountain,” K2 in Pakistan’s northern Gilgit-Baltistan region is often considered a more challenging ascent than Mount Everest. Many climbers from around the world have perished in their attempts to conquer this formidable peak.

The 45-day expedition is organized by Imagine Climb, a mountain trekking and climbing company run by Pakistani climber Sirbaz Khan, and is sponsored by the Pakistan Army. The team includes professional women climbers Anum Uzair from Lahore, sisters Amina Hanif and Siddiqa Hanif from Hushe Valley in Gilgit-Baltistan’s Ghanche district, Bibi Afzoon and Sultana Nasab from Hunza in northern Pakistan, and Shama Baqir.

They completed a week-long training session at Sadpara Mountaineering School in early June.

Sirbaz Khan, the first and only Pakistani to have climbed 11 of the world’s 14 highest peaks, will lead the all-women team on their 45-day expedition.

Anum Uzair and her husband, Ahmed Uzair, made history in September 2023 as the first Pakistani husband-wife duo to summit Nepal’s Mount Manaslu. Anum stated that the challenge of climbing a dangerous mountain like K2 had always fascinated her.

“The inspiration came from a deep desire to push my limits, the allure of the mountain itself, and the opportunity to represent and inspire women in Pakistan,” she told Arab News. “The idea of standing on the summit of K2, knowing the obstacles I’ve overcome, is incredibly motivating.”

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