Body of Italian hiker found in Australian mountains

SYDNEY (AFP) – A 24-year-old Italian has been found dead in Australia’s Blue Mountains near Sydney after a days-long search, police said yesterday.

The man, who was not officially named, was reported missing near the town of Blackheath on Wednesday. A search party located the body near the scenic spot of Baltzer Lookout, New South Wales police said.

The mountains are only a short drive from Sydney and are popular with hikers.

Local and Italian media earlier said a search was underway in the area for Sydney resident Mattia Fiaschini, who was reported missing after failing to turn up for work.

An operation was underway to retrieve the body, police added.

It is not believed the death was linked to recent bushfires in the area.