Oct 31, 2019

Nepali climber summits world's 14 tallest mountains in record time

Courtesy: Nirmal Pirja

A 36-year-old Nepali climber named Nirmal Purja has reached the summit of the world's 14 highest mountains (all at least 26,350 feet tall) in just over six months.

Why it matters: The fastest previous ascent of all 14 peaks — which are all in the Himalayan and Karakoram ranges that stretch across China, India, Nepal and Pakistan — took nearly eight years. He smashed the record to smithereens. Purja credits his endurance to his natural physiology and his intense military training. Prior to attempting this feat, he spent 10 years in the British special forces.

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3 a.m. ET: 5,410,228 — Total deaths: 345,105 — Total recoveries — 2,169,005Map.
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Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios. This graphic includes "probable deaths" that New York City began reporting on April 14.

The CDC is warning of potentially "aggressive rodent behavior" amid a rise in reports of rat activity in several areas, as the animals search further for food while Americans stay home more during the coronavirus pandemic.

By the numbers: More than 97,700 people have died from COVID-19 and over 1.6 million have tested positive in the U.S. Over 366,700 Americans have recovered and more than 14.1 million tests have been conducted.

World coronavirus updates

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Japan's economy minister outlined plans on Monday to end the nationwide state of emergency as the number of new novel coronavirus cases continues to decline to fewer than 50 a day, per Bloomberg. Japan has reported 16,550 cases and 820 deaths.

By the numbers: Over 5.4 million people have tested positive for the virus as of Monday, and more than 2.1 million have recovered. The U.S. has reported the most cases in the world (over 1.6 million from 13.7 million tests). The U.K. is reporting over 36,800 deaths from the coronavirus — the most fatalities outside the U.S.