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THERE WILL ALSO BE “GURKHA” WOMEN

Kathmandu / The female “Gurkhas” must pass the same tests as their male companions, such as jumping a bank 75 times in a minute or running five kilometers uphill in 48 minutes carrying a basket of 25 kilos of sand tied to the head.

The epithets “ferocious, Spartan and terrifying” will no longer be exclusively male adjectives applied to soldiers “Gurkha”, the dreaded elite corps of the British Army formed by Nepalese because in 2019 it will start recruiting women for the first time in its 200 years of history.

The name “gurkha” comes from “Gorkha”, a principality established by a people originally from Rajasthan (northern India) who moved to lands of what is now Nepal in the sixteenth century and founded the dynasty that the dethroned Nepalese monarchy heads.

When the British try to invade Nepal in 1814 they endeed up signing a peace agreement that allowed recruit the breve Nepalese soldiers who had faced them and, in 1947, after the partition of the Indian subcontinent with the departure of United Kingdom, their Army absorbed half of the regiments “gurkhas”.

The Prince Enrique, member of Honour

Thus, the “gurkhas” have fought with the British Army in Afghanistan in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, in the two world wars -when they lost 43,000 men, according to their own data- or in Iraq, with Prince Enrique as one of their members of honour.

Characterized by its curved knives of 46 centimetres long or “Khukuris”, more than 200,000 “gurkhas” served in the British Army, but at the present the figure barely reaches 3,000, a number that London plans to increase by 800 troops.

And some of them could be women because the corps will open the door to the female soldiers next year and in 2020 it will send the first ones to the United Kingdom for training, culminating an idea that the British Ministry of Defense had already put on the table in 2007 but that then rejected by impractical.

“It is a source of pride for all of us”, the president of the Organization of ex-militaries of Army Gurkha (Gaeso, in English), Krishna Kumar Rai, who retired from the Tenth Rifles in Gurkha, told Efe.

For decades it has been believed that letting women enter their ranks would end the camaraderie they enjoy, but in Rai’s opinion “now this is a thing of the past” and Nepalis can “impress” the world as many female soldiers that have already been engaged in dangerous missions.

The same tests as males

The “gurkhas” will be real heroines because they must pass the same tests as their male colleagues: jump a bench 75 times in a minute or do 70 sit-ups in two minutes.

The hardest test is the “doko”, consisting of running almost 5 kilometers uphill carrying 25 kilos of sand in a basket tied to the head. Applicants must complete the task in less than 48 minutes.

“All the candidates, whether men or women, must run up and down the hillsides of the Himalayas carrying the ‘doko’ (basket). It is challenging and difficult for women to physically compete with men,” the president of the Gaeso Committee in the District of Kathmandu, Sunita Gurung, explained to Efe.

“It is difficult, but not impossible,” this woman said optimistically, whose husband was a member of the “Gurkhas” in 1991.

This is, in her opinion, an important opportunity for the Nepalese girls, who have on the horizon a prestigious job and a good salary in the UK.

A soldier in the brigade of the “Gurkhas” wins, according to the president of Gaeso Kathmandu, about 1,400 pounds a month and has options to obtain a promotion and a good pension, as well as a British passport. (July 20, 2018, EFE/PracticaEspañol.)

(Español) Comprehension

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Question 1
El texto trata sobre...
A
Las armas que utilizan los soldados del Ejército de élite británico.
B
Las pruebas que tienen que realizar los aspirantes al Ejército de élite británico.
C
La posibilidad de las mujeres de incorporarse al Ejército de élite británico.
Question 2
Los británicos invadieron Nepal.
A
Verdadero.
B
Falso.
C
No se cita.
Question 3
Según datos oficiales, los gurkhas perdieron 43.000 hombres en las dos guerras mundiales.
A
No se cita.
B
Falso.
C
Verdadero.
Question 4
El número de soldados en la actualidad...
A
ha aumentado.
B
ha disminuido.
C
se mantiene prácticamente igual.
Question 5
La prueba considerada más difícil es...
A
correr casi 5 kilómetros cuesta arriba cargando 25 kilos de arena en una cesta atada a la cabeza.
B
saltar un banco 75 veces en un minuto
C
hacer 70 abdominales en dos minutos
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La función del vídeo es...
A
entretener mediante el audio y las imágenes.
B
reiterar y completar la información del texto mediante el audio y las imágenes.
C
opinar sobre el hecho que se describe en el texto mediante el audio y las imágenes.
Question 7
La función del texto es...
A
informar.
B
entretener.
C
opinar.
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