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Search continues for 4-year-old Maryam

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10:04 CET+01:00
Despite a massive search, a four-year-old girl who disappeared on New Year's Eve in Malmö in southern Sweden is still missing. Her mother claims she was kidnapped by two men and was being taken to her father, who lives abroad.

Police have released the girl's name, Maryam Ali Abdulhadi, and photo and asked the public for assistance, reported the Dagens Nyheter newspaper.

The four-year-old Maryam, who was wearing pink and sporting pigtails, was with her aunts at Gustav Adolf square in central Malmö when she disappeared just after midnight. They called the police after unsuccessfully searching for her in the crowd for 30 minutes.

The girl's mother has said that her daughter has been kidnapped and is on her way to her father, reported Norwegian newspaper VG, which interviewed the mother yesterday evning.

The mother told VG that Maryam's father has called her and told her what had occurred. He explained that the girl was okay, but she was going to live with him.

The mother added that she doesn't know the child's current location. She told VG that the kidnapping was done by two men.

Swedish police have declined to comment on the new information, according to VG.

Several police officers searched for the girl in central Malmö on New Year's Day. They interviewed several family members, but there is still no information about where Maryam might be.

Police began with a preliminary investigation of human trafficking, since “there were circumstances” that indicated that someone had taken the girl.

“But we are not focusing on a particular individual,” Bo Paulsson, commander on duty at the Malmö police, told TT news agency last night.

The girl and both of her parents are foreign citizens. The girl lives with her mother in Sweden while her father resides abroad.

Police did not actively search for the girl Friday night and Saturday morning.

“But all police patrols know about this and are keeping their eyes and ears open,” Paulsson said.

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