BEIJING — SIX climbers from the United States, China, and the Soviet Union reached the top of Mount Everest May 7 in an expedition intended to foster good will among their nations and pick trash off the world's highest peak. [See `Mountaineers Gear Up for Summit,' March 1 Monitor (March 2-8 World Edition), Page 14.] China's official Xinhua News Agency said the climbers had reached the summit of the 29,028-foot-high peak Monday afternoon.
The climbers had said they would plant the flags of the three nations atop the peak to symbolize achievement possible through cooperation.
The six are part of a 46-member expedition that began climbing Everest in March and originally had hoped to put climbers at the top on April 22, Earth Day. The climbers neared the peak in late April but were forced by high winds to retreat to base camp. They set out a second time on April 30.
On their way back down the mountain, the climbers are to pick up an estimated two tons of cans, tents, oxygen bottles, and other debris left by previous expeditions.
Xinhua said the six who reached the top were: Americans Stephen Gall and Robert Link, Soviets Sergey Arsentjev and Grigory Lunjakov, and Tibetan climbers Jiabu and Daqimi from the Chinese team.