A team of British police experts were due on the eastern Aegean island of Kos on Friday to help local authorities excavate a mound that may contain the remains of Ben Needham, a Sheffield toddler who went missing on the island 21 years ago at the age of just 21 months old.
Greek authorities in May issued a report saying that continued investigations over the 21-year period had concluded that the young boy had most likely been crushed by rubble when the Needham family’s farmhouse was undergoing renovation and that his body had been lost in the debris.
“I am so pleased that this investigation is now moving forward and that the Greek authorities are showing a true commitment to investigate Ben’s disappearance,» Ben’s mother, Kerry, was quoted by the BBC as saying in a statement. «Today is just a start, I understand that all possibilities have to be considered and the search of the area around the building work where Ben disappeared is part of that.”
Kerry Needham had rejected the report in May, but Greek authorities have since asked for help from British experts to search the former building site and a mound of rubble nearby.
The team of experts will be led by the South Yorkshire Police and will use high-tech equipment and specially trained dogs to search the site.
A spokesman for the team was quoted by the BBC as saying that «the operation, expected to last a week to 10 days, follows a Greek police request for specialist support to follow through a line of inquiry they have developed.”