Friday 23 August 2019

'It means so much to us' - Mum of missing Nora (15) praises Malaysian authorities as Westlife ask fans to join search

This handout from the Royal Malaysia Police taken and released on August 10, 2019 shows Meabh (C) and Sebastien (R), the parents of missing 15-year-old Franco-Irish teenager Nora Quoirin, standing with the police as they continue to search for her in Seremban.
This handout from the Royal Malaysia Police taken and released on August 10, 2019 shows Meabh (C) and Sebastien (R), the parents of missing 15-year-old Franco-Irish teenager Nora Quoirin, standing with the police as they continue to search for her in Seremban.

Padraig Collins

The parents of a Irish teenager missing for almost a week in Malaysia have thanked teams taking part in a widespread search operation.

Meabh and Sebastian Quoirin, whose 15-year-old daughter Nora has been missing since last Sunday, said "terima kasih", or "thank you" in Malay, to those searching for her.

In a short speech, Ms Quoirin held back tears, as her husband stood beside her, rubbing her arm.

In a video broadcast on local media, she said: "We want to say thank you to each and every one of you. We know you're searching night and day for Nora.

"We see you working so hard and also praying with us and being with us.

"You have given up your time especially at a special festival time," she said, referring to Hari Raya Haji, the Islamic "festival of sacrifice" celebrations.

Ms Quoirin praised the dedication and expertise shown by those looking for Nora.

"To be with us here, it means the world to us. We are so grateful for everything that you are doing for us, everyone who is helping here and not from here.

"We are extremely impressed by the effort, your expertise, your dedication and we hope you find Nora.

"And thank you so much and terima kasih," she said.

Undated handout photo supplied by the Lucie Blackman Trust on behalf of the family of Nora Quoirin. Family Handout/Lucie Blackman Trust/PA Wire
Undated handout photo supplied by the Lucie Blackman Trust on behalf of the family of Nora Quoirin. Family Handout/Lucie Blackman Trust/PA Wire

The Quoirins, an Irish-French family who have lived in London for 20 years, arrived in the Dusun forest eco-resort in southern Negeri Sembilan state a week ago.

Nora was last seen on Sunday.

The family fears their daughter, who was born with the brain defect holoprosencephaly and needs help with many aspects of everyday life, may have been abducted.

Gardaí last night sent a liaison officer to Kuala Lumpur to assist the Department of Foreign Affairs and to liaise with Malaysian police and UK and French authorities to assist in the search for Nora.

Search goes on: Family photos of Nora Quoirin who disappeared almost a week ago. Photos: Reuters
Search goes on: Family photos of Nora Quoirin who disappeared almost a week ago. Photos: Reuters

Westlife, who performed in the country this week, asked their fans to help look for the missing teenager, the Malaysian Star publication reported.

Posters of Nora flashed on giant screens before and during the concert before band member Nicky Byrne pleaded with the 7, 000-strong crowd to keep find her.

"Help share (the poster) on social media. If you know anything about Nora's disappearance, come forward," he said.

"We are from the same country so this feels very close to us. We wish her family, who must be devastated, much love.

"If you have any information, please go to the authorities," Mr Byrne said.

The family has said they remain hopeful after police leading the investigation refused to rule out a "criminal element".

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Lucie Blackman Trust intelligence on ops@lbtrust.org or +44 800 098 8485

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