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MOSCOW, January 12 (Itar-Tass) — Two first-grade schoolgirls reported missing since Wednesday have been found alive, Press service Chief of the Bryansk regional Interior Department Svetlana Kokotova said policemen found the girls in their friend's apartment in the Otradnoye residential area where the two girls live with their parents. It turned out that they had been visiting their friend and stayed at their friend's place overnight.
A criminal case was opened into an incident in Bryansk south of Moscow where the two first-grade school girls from school No. 63 had been missing since Wednesday. Spokesman for the Russian Investigative Committee (SK) Vladimir Markin told Itar-Tass that "instituting criminal proceedings is a usual practice in such situations which enables the investigation and law enforcers to take all the necessary investigative measures for effective search."
The two first-grade school girls failed to return home from school on January 11 after school lessons ended at 1.00 pm Wednesday. At around 5.00 pm the parents of one of the missing girls contacted police, declaring the children were missing. Both girls were seen last at around 6.00 pm Wednesday.
All the necessary investigative and search efforts were made to establish the whereabouts of the missing children, SK said. Experienced detectives and experts from the SK Central headquarters were sent to Bryansk to join search operations and clarify the circumstances of the incident. The SK head staff brought the investigation under control.
Earlier, Svetlana Kokotova told Itar-Tass that the search for the children in which more than 500 policemen and experts with sniffer dogs were involved, continued throughout last night. Rescuers and workers of the administration of the Bezhitsky region, where the children might presumably be staying, joined the search as well, Kokotova said. Law enforcers have combed a nearby forest, checked all the houses and constructions in the neighborhood, commuter trains and other transport vehicles.
Police studied the girls’ contacts at school and even their contacts with former kindergarten friends. Police circulated an identikit of the missing girls and asked the population for help.
Bryansk regional Governor Nikolai Denin expressed concern over the incident. He presumed that the two first-grade school girls- Anastasiya Baraborkina and Olga Markelova, might have disappeared because of an irresponsible conduct of workers of the related educational establishment.
It is a second serious incident which occurred in the Bryansk region in recent days. On January 8 a young woman with a perambulator in which 1, 5 -year old child was fell into a ruined tube of a sewage collector. The woman survived, but the child was killed.