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Old 30-04-2018, 10:26 AM   #1
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On top of the world

Women’s EuroArabian expedition arrives at the North Pole

• Renowned polar explorer Felicity Aston MBE leads 7 women from Europe and 4 from the Middle East to the geographic North Pole
• 11 mostly novice female polar adventurers completed the demanding cross-country ski in 8 days
• CEO of Kaspersky Lab, Eugene Kaspersky, flies to North Pole to greet expedition team at the finish line

Overcoming extreme temperatures, shifting pack ice, blistering winds, and the ever-present threat of polar bears, 11 predominantly novice female adventurers arrived yesterday at the North Pole, 8 days after launching their expedition.

With only two experienced polar explorers among them, the team – consisting of four women from the Middle East and seven from Europe – successfully completed the demanding cross-country ski, yesterday, from 1° North, to the pole.

Led by veteran polar explorer, Felicity Aston MBE, the team was greeted upon arrival at the North Pole by the founder and CEO of cybersecurity company Kaspersky Lab, Eugene Kaspersky.

A keen adventurer and long-time supporter of women’s polar expeditions – including two previously led by Aston – Kaspersky spoke of his admiration of the team, commending them for their efforts.

“I couldn’t miss the opportunity to personally congratulate these brave women at the end of their journey… and raise a glass of champagne in their honor. Things didn’t go smoothly for them. They faced severe temperatures, strong winds and drifting ice, but still finished their expedition against all odds. Some members of the team were literally the first women from their respective countries to ever set foot on the Arctic ice cap.” Aston said it was one of the more challenging trips she has embarked upon.

“The team endured extreme cold, the possibility of polar bears, open leads of water, thin ice, and being forced to live in very close quarters in small tents. On some days, they had to navigate vast fields of ice rubble, forcing them to make tough and demoralising choices, like heading in the opposite direction for extended periods to find another way around. To their credit, they overcame all of this with a great sense of humor, spirit of adventure, and by holding on tightly to their reasons for making this trip,” she said.

Aston launched the 8-day polar adventure to foster greater dialogue and understanding between women from Western and Arabian cultures, hoping their efforts would inspire all women – no matter their background – to reach beyond the expectation of others and fulfil their own life ambitions.

“The team are so delighted to have had the opportunity to ski to the top of the world together, sending out a positive and powerful message of collaboration, teamwork and perseverance against the odds – values I know that are also shared by Kaspersky lab,” Aston said.

Prior to its support of the Women’s EuroArabian expedition, Kaspersky Lab sponsored the Kaspersky Commonwealth Antarctic Expedition in 2009, and the Kaspersky ONE Transantarctic Expedition in 2011.

More recently, Kaspersky Lab sponsored Russian mountain guide Olga Rumyantseva – whom in 2013 undertook the Kaspersky 7 Volcanoes Expedition, becoming the first woman in history to solo-climb the highest volcano summits in each of the seven continents, within one calendar year.
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