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Tuesday, August 21, 2001

Setback in search for girl (Sabah)

KOTA KINABALU: Strong winds, thick fog and heavy rain continue to hamper the search for Ellie James near the summit of Mount Kinabalu.

Some 50 rescuers, comprising Sabah Park rangers, soldiers, policemen, firemen, villagers and other volunteers, were unable to do much on Sunday and most of yesterday due to the bad weather.

Officials said they were hoping that the weather would clear by yesterday evening for them to conduct an overnight search for the 16-year-old schoolgirl from Cornwall, Britain.

"The girl has not been found yet. The search and rescue effort is still on," Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Norian Mai said yesterday.

Medical officials are worried about Ellie's physical condition.

She went missing last Thursday near St John's Peak of the 4,095m-high mountain.

A doctor here said that although Ellie was wearing warm clothes, prolonged exposure to near sub-zero temperatures at night and the absence of food would weaken her.

A group of 30 soldiers are carrying out the search near Kampung Kiau at the foot of the mountain.

Source: The Star

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