Portuguese police have broken their silence as a major search for Madeleine McCann goes ahead. The authorities have locked down a remote reservoir in the Algarve, Portugal, this morning as they begin to comb scrubland near the water. It is the first major search for Maddie, who went missing in Praia De Luz back in 2007, in nine years.
German police officers, who are leading the operation, were spotted arriving at Arade Dam at roughly 6.30pm yesterday. This morning police divers appear to be concentrating their search at a particular area of the reservoir.
Officers have set up two white tents on the bank as divers entered the water early this morning.
Roads leading to Arade Dam, described as the “little paradise” of primary suspect Christian Brueckner, had been closed yesterday as part of a “preparation day”.
A makeshift campsite was also set up after the arrival of Portuguese police and civil protection officers yesterday lunchtime.
In a new statement by Portuguese police, they confirmed the search will be coordinated by the Portuguese Judiciary Police but that it was requested by German officers.
They are planning to comb the area until nightfall, with a 9am start time.
The statement said: “In view of the news made public, the Judiciary Police confirms that, regarding the investigation into the disappearance of an English child, which occurred in the Algarve in 2007, steps are still being taken to fully clarify the situation.
“Within the scope of international cooperation, in the next few days in the Algarve region, new searches will be carried out, coordinated by the Judiciary Police, at the request of the German Authorities (BKA) and with the presence of the British Authorities.
“Information will be provided in due course on the outcome of the proceedings.”