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ZURICH (Reuters) - Three Spanish skiers died and two were injured when an avalanche swept them down a Swiss mountainside, police in the southwestern canton of Valais said on Sunday.

They were part of a touring group skiing near Fiesch on Saturday afternoon when the snow mass detached. Another group that witnessed the accident alerted authorities.

Rescue crews had to suspend their search for survivors on Saturday evening due to bad weather. Days of heavy snowfalls have blanketed the Alps, prompting avalanche warnings.

Cantonal police posted a warning on their website on Thursday advising skiers of the danger of avalanches ahead of the long Easter weekend.

A police spokesman said the search was being ended and no one else was believed missing. The two slightly injured members of the group were taken to hospital for treatment.

(Reporting by Michael Shields; editing by John Stonestreet)

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Reuters