Australia: 4-year-old girl found more than two weeks after her disappearance

the basics A four-year-old Australian girl, missing on 000 October while camping with her parents, has been found Wednesday “safe and sound” in a house, police said.

Cleo Smith was missing while camping with her family in Western Australia. Major air, sea and land searches involving around 100 police officers were immediately launched.

The girl was found by police in a locked house in Carnarvon, near where she was last seen 18 days earlier, a indicated the police.

“One of the officers hugged her and asked her ‘what’s your name’,” said Deputy Police Commissioner Col White. The little girl then replied “My name is Cleo”.

A man arrested

The police, who forced the entrance to the house where she was at around 1 a.m., said they had arrested a man for questioning. He is 36 years old and has no ties to family, said Western Australia Police Commissioner Chris Dawson.

Cleo joined her parents soon after. “Our family is complete again,” said her mother, Ellie Smith, in a message accompanying a photo of her daughter posted on Instagram.

She had recounted her immense despair when she found out at 6 a.m. that the family tent was open and her eldest daughter was missing. His statements sparked a tremendous outpouring of solidarity across Australia.

On a radio, Commissioner Blanch called the rescue “simply unbelievable”. “It’s very rare. It’s something we wholeheartedly hoped for and it has come true.”

For the past two weeks, research for to find Cleo were followed by the whole country. Following the reunion between the little girl and her parents, many Australians have expressed their joy on social networks.

Police have not given any details on the exact circumstances of Cloe’s disappearance or how she was found.

“We had followed a lot of leads and it got us to an individual’s house,” Mr. Dawson simply told ABC radio.

” The girl is as good as we could hope for under such circumstances, “he added. She was taken care of by a medical team.

Police last month offered a bounty of one million Australian dollars (640 000 euros) for any information that would help find Cleo.

At the time of her disappearance, Commissioner Rod Wilde had said that the investigation suggested “that she was abducted in the tent” and that the authorities had reason to fear for her safety.

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