POLICE IN SCOTLAND have this evening released a second image of missing three-year-old boy Mikaeel Kular, this time wearing the jacket he was believed to be wearing when he disappeared.
Police had earlier issued a Child Rescue Alert to help in the search forthe boy and opened a dedicated phoneline has been established to take calls from anybody with information about his whereabouts.
Detectives hope that the alert will allow the public and media to assist in safely tracing Mikaeel. The system is only used when certain criteria are met.
The young child was last seen going to bed at his home at Ferry Gait Crescent in Edinburgh at about 9pm yesterday.
When his family awoke this morning at 7.15am, he was not within the property. His mother immediately contacted police.
Mikaeel is described as two foot tall, of slim build and Asian appearance. He is possibly wearing a thigh length beige jacket with grey fur lined hood, black gloves with multi-coloured fingers, dark navy blue jogging bottoms, a grey pyjama top featuring an embroidered turquoise dinosaur on the chest and brown Clark shoes with two Velcro straps.
He has a faded scar on the bridge of his nose and a sore on the left hand side of his mouth.
Three year old Mikaeel Kular wearing the jacket police believe he was wearing when he disappeared. (Pic: Police Scotland)
The earlier photograph of Mikaeel (above right) was taken just prior to Christmas, has been widely circulated. His hair may be slightly longer than featured in the photograph, police noted.
Officers say the search is still focused in the Drylaw area, including Muirhouse, Pennywell and Silverknowes.
“Specialist officers and resources are working with officers from City of Edinburgh Division to trace Mikaeel,” police said in the latest statement.
Members of the public are asked as a matter of urgency to check all property including gardens, out buildings, garages, sheds and vehicles for Mikaeel. If people are aware their neighbours are not available to carry out these checks, they are asked to do it on their behalf.
Door-to-door enquiries have also been carried out and the police helicopter deployed. Road police, police dogs and trained search officers have been drafted in.
-Additional reporting Rónán Duffy
First published at 10am