Missing toddler Noah (last name still not given) has been found alive and well, within the area that well over hundred people, backed by police, sniffer dogs and heat-seeking drones have been searching for the best part of 36-hours.
For now, little has been explained of how the child was found. All that is clear is that locals involved in the search have been celebrating, crying with relief and generally congratulating each other.
SIC television news has promised to bring ‘more details’ shortly.
News through the day has explained that Noah ‘often left the house under his own steam’, usually to find his Belgian father who works on land nearby.
The little boy appears to have left the house in the early hours of yesterday morning when his mother (Portuguese) and elder sister were still sleeping.
According to Correio da Manhã, he was finally found early this evening, without his clothes on, but otherwise apparently well.
He has been taken to hospital for observation.
UPDATE: Little Noah was found “naked, dehydrated, with scratches and cuts to his feet and legs” but otherwise ‘well’. He was spied by searchers, apparently walking purposefully along a dirt track surrounded by vegetation. He even managed a few words as the incredulous locals rushed to gather him up.
Say reports, this won’t be an end to the investigation. It will only be officially closed once Noah has been submitted to ‘medico-legal’ examination to determine whether the presumed facts tally with ‘reality’.
Did he really spend the last 36 hours without eating or drinking? Did he really walk on his own what amounts to around 10 kms?
For the time being, “nothing contradicts the parents’ description of the circumstances in which the child went missing”, stresses Jornal de Notícias.
Noah has spent the night in hospital as a precaution to ensure his state of dehydration is stablised. Eugénia André, clinical director of the Hospital Amato Lusitano has confirmed that Noah arrived “conscious, lucid, collaborative and in good spirits”.