Corpses washed away from cemeteries in France, found in Italy due to floods
Paris, Oct 07: Corpses from a cemetery in southern France were swept down a mountainous valley by a violent storm, with some believed to have washed up in Italy, officials said.
In the village of Saint-Dalmas-de-Tende, surging flood waters washed away dozens of graves and family tombs.
The corpses were in such an advanced state of decomposition that they were clearly distinguishable from recent storm victims, she added.
A spokeswoman for France's Alpes-Maritimes regional administration, badly hit by the storm along with the Italian regions of Liguria and Piedmont, said it was unclear where the bodies had come from but corpses unearthed from cemeteries had washed up on the Italian side.
Local authorities said cemeteries in the French towns of Saint-Martin-de-Vésubie and Tende were partially washed out by the floods.
The mayor of Tende, Jean-Pierre Vassallo, told Le Parisien newspaper that the village cemetery "was cut in two" and bodies even were unearthed.
Twelve people have been killed in the storm in France and Italy, four on the French side, eight on the Italian. More than 600 rescuers and others are searching for about 20 people still unaccounted for.
Police are going door to door to check on people reported as missing in hamlets where roads, electricity, communications and water supplies were cut off by the storm.
Seven black Canadian wolves were also missing after a wildlife park north of the southern French Riviera city of Nice was left in rubble after the floods.
The French Office for Biodiversity (OFB) has warned that the wolves may starve to death if not found soon as they are used to being fed.