A missing 15-year-old girl from London is believed to have been abducted in Malaysia, a charity supporting the family has said.
Nora Quoirin, who has special needs, went missing from a resort while on a holiday with her family
The disappearance of schoolgirl is now being treated as both an abduction and a missing person case by police, the Lucie Blackman Trust (LBT) said.
The charity said police were heavily deployed in both search and investigative roles in the resort and surrounding areas.
Nora is the daughter of an Irish-French couple who have lived in London for around 20 years.
She and her family were staying at the Dusan resort in a nature reserve near Seremban, 39 miles south of the capital Kuala Lumpur,
Nora’s father raised the alarm when he discovered her missing from her bedroom at 8am local time on Sunday. Her window had been opened.
Speaking from Belfast, Nora’s aunt Aisling Agnew said: “Nora’s parents and relatives in Ireland and France are distraught by her disappearance.
“Nora is a child with special needs and has learning and developmental disabilities which make her especially vulnerable and we fear for her safety.
“Nora would not know how to get help and would never leave her family voluntarily. We now consider this a criminal matter.
“We are appealing to everyone to assist the local police in any way they can and to pass on any information that would help locate our beloved Nora without delay.”
Family friend Catherine Cook told PA: “It’s out of character for Nora to go wandering off. I’m a mother and I burst into tears just hearing this story. I cannot imagine the hell that they are living right now. I just ask for anyone who can help them to do so as soon as possible.
“To my knowledge the French government and the Irish government are helping them and it would be great if other agencies or governments worldwide could support them.”
A spokesman for Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs said: “We are aware of the case and providing consular assistance.”
Nora, whose mother Meabh is originally from Belfast and whose father is French, is understood to have been travelling on an Irish passport.
LBT’s chief executive Matthew Searle said: “This is a very vulnerable young girl missing in a remote location.
“She has been missing for over 24 hours now and it is imperative that every resource available is deployed to search for her.”