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Body believed to be missing French tourist found in Nepal

PRAKASH MATHEMA, AFP | Personnel of the Nepalese Army and police officers with sniffer dogs in Kathmandu on November 25, 2014

A body believed to be that of a 35-year-old French tourist who went missing in Nepal last week has been found, officials said Friday, as police awaited autopsy results to confirm her identity.


Police began searching for the missing woman after a bag containing her passport, clothes and notebook was discovered near a highway last Friday in Syangja, 153 kilometres (95 miles) west of Kathmandu.

Officers found a decomposed corpse Thursday after locals alerted the police of a foul smell in the area, said Bir Bahadur Pulami, deputy superintendent of police for Syangja.

"The face had decomposed beyond recognition, but we believe it is the missing person after her friends identified her hair, clothes and jewellery," Pulami told AFP.

The body has been taken to the capital Kathmandu for an autopsy.

"A postmortem will be performed to confirm her identity and the cause of death. Our investigation is ongoing," the officer said.

The Himalayan nation relies on tourism as a major contributor to its economy, welcoming thousands of tourists every year, many of them climbers and trekkers.

But the Nepali tourist industry has suffered since a massive earthquake struck the country in April 2015, killing almost 9,000 people.


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