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Mum, 26, dies in bloody shark attack in front of her daughter, 5, as beast rips off her leg just metres from beach

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A MUM has been killed after a shark tore off her leg as she swam with her five-year-old daughter off a Mexican beach.

Maria Fernandez Martinez Jimenez, 26, was just 65ft from the shore when she was savaged by the beast at Melaque Beach in the state of Jalisco.

The woman was helped to shore by horrified onlookers before dying of blood loss

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The woman was helped to shore by horrified onlookers before dying of blood loss

The tourist was helped to safety as rescue crews rushed to the scene following the attack on Saturday.

Graphic footage appears to show Maria lying on the sand as horrified onlookers rallied around her.

Beachgoers could be heard shouting “she’s lost her leg” as they waited for emergency responders to arrive.

Despite the quick response by paramedics, she died of blood loss from the massive bite wound she suffered.

Maria’s daughter miraculously escaped injury despite being beside her in the water on Mexico’s Pacific Coast.

She helped the youngster to safety by placing her on a floating play platform after becoming aware she was in danger, according to local reports.

Organisers suspended a swimming race due to take place in the same waters.

Local authorities have issued a warning to locals and visitors to stay out of the water following the tragedy.

Wellwishers left flowers for the victim at a makeshift altar put on the beach at the spot where she died.

Civil Protection workers and firefighters in the municipality of Cihuatlan said: “Our officials were carrying out support activities during a swimming event in the bay when they received reports of a person who was having problems getting out of the sea.

“When they reached the area they discovered a woman who was lifeless with one of her legs amputated, apparently following a shark attack.”

Cihuatlan’s municipal government said in a subsequent message: “Following the terrible incident off one of our beaches, our priority is guaranteeing the safety and wellbeing of all our citizens.

“That’s why we’ve decided on a precautionary measure of banning access to beaches until further notice.

“We are working in collaboration with the appropriate authorities to evaluate the situation and take the necessary measures to guarantee security on our beaches.”

Maria was a former marine biology student at the University of Guadalajara.

In a tribute on Facebook, university chiefs said: “We express our condolences following this irreparable loss.”

A former University of Guadalajara student added alongside a photo of Maria: “I want to express my condolences, affection and support for Maria’s family following her death.

“I am accompanying this wonderful family I feel as my own in their pain and anguish. I am with you. Rest in peace Maria.”

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