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PARIS (Reuters) - An avalanche swept away a group of cross-country skiers in the French Alps on Tuesday, killing three people, emergency services said.

The avalanche happened in the Bonneval-sur-Arc ski area at an altitude of 3,000 metres (yards), Cyril Anceau, head of a police mountain rescue unit in the nearby city of Albertville, told BFMTV.

"Unfortunately, the three victims have been found dead," Anceau said. "The death toll is definitive. The search is over."

The dead included a high-mountain guide who was leading the group, rescue workers said.

Anceau said the weather was fine on Tuesday but there had been recent snowfalls in the area, which might explain the avalanche.

The authorities have not yet released the names or nationalities of the victims.

(Reporting by Catherine Lagrange, Adrian Croft; Editing by John Irish)

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