Bangladeshi, South Korean climbers die on Everest

KATHMANDU (AFP) - A climber from Bangladesh and another from South Korea have died on Mount Everest as hundreds flock to the world's highest peak during good weather, Nepalese tourism officials said on Tuesday.

"Both men died while descending from the summit on Monday," an official with the tourism ministry told AFP from Everest Base Camp.

Mr Sung Ho Seo, 34, of South Korea was attempting the climb without supplementary oxygen and died on his way down the mountain.

Mr Mohammed Hossain, 35, from Bangladesh, died in his tent a few hours after successfully climbing the summit.

"The exact cause of death is unknown, but altitude played a part," said the official, Mr Gyanendra Shrestha, adding that the bodies would not be recovered until after the summit season ended so as not to interrupt other climbers.

Both men perished in the "death zone" - above 8,000 metres, notorious for its difficult terrain and thin air.

Five other climbers have died on the 8,848-metre mountain this season.

Some 300 people have perished trying to reach the summit during the last six decades. The bodies of some of them remain on the mountain.

May is considered the best time for climbing in the Nepalese Himalayas because of mild weather and some 300 people have reached the top of Everest so far this year.

But a brawl that erupted last month between three European climbers and Nepalese guides on the mountain cast a shadow over this year's season, which marks the 60th anniversary of the maiden ascent by Mr Tenzing Norgay and Mr Edmund Hillary.