Fifth body found in French Alps following avalanche

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PARIS — French rescue services have found a fifth body following an avalanche southwest of Mont Blanc in the French Alps, local authorities said on Monday.

The avalanche occurred in the middle of the day on Sunday on the Armancette glacier, which is near the village and ski resort of Les Contamines-Montjoie.

Emmanuel Coquand, spokesperson for the authorities in the Haute-Savoie region, said he could not confirm the identity of the victims but that they had been backcountry skiing when the avalanche hit.

Coquand said the avalanche had been extensive, covering an area of one km by 500 meters (half a mile by 550 yards) at an altitude of 3,500 meters (11,482 feet) and that its causes were being investigated.

Prosecutors in Bonneville who are investigating the incident did not immediately respond to questions regarding the identify of those killed in the avalanche, but local media said two of the dead were mountain guides.

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