NEWS

New search for missing British toddler begins

A new search has begun on the Greek Aegean island of Kos for a British toddler who went missing from his family’s farmhouse over two decades ago, police said on Friday.

Supervised by a prosecutor, a team of British experts supported by Greek police will search the area where Ben Needham, a 21-month toddler from Sheffield, went missing in 1991.

“A first examination of the area took place on Thursday… the area where the toddler was declared as missing. The search is expected to last around a week,» a police source at the regional headquarters on Syros island told AFP.

“It’s quite a large operation, assisted by Kos and British police, the fire department, the local municipality and volunteers,» the officer said.

Another police source said Scotland Yard had sent two officers to join the search.

Authorities have declined to give further information but British media said the search will focus on a mound of rubble near the farmhouse.

The British police team is led by Detective Superintendent Matt Fenwick of South Yorkshire Police and includes dog teams and a forensic archaeologist.

The police operation will begin with a specialist survey using hi-tech geophysics equipment.

Needham’s mother Kerry said she supported the new search operation.

“I know in my heart of hearts they will not find Ben there because he is still alive somewhere. But I have to admit for the first time ever this search has put doubts into my head,» Needham told the Daily Mirror.

She said she intended to travel to Kos, adding: «It is the last place I want to be but I feel I need to.”

[AFP]