Belgium takes case of missing trek girl to Peru

Belgium takes case of missing trek girl to Peru
Natacha de Crombrugghe has been missing in Peru since 23 January. Credit: Facebook

A Belgian father’s Facebook appeal for news of his daughter — reported missing for two weeks on a trekking trip to Peru — has been taken to the government in Lima by a federal crisis cell, he told The Brussels Times.

Friends of Natacha de Crombrugghe posted on behalf of Dad Eric saying they had no news of her whereabouts since January 23 — 15 days on from a planned visit to the South American country’s Canyon del Colca.

“A federal crisis cell bringing together foreign ministry officials and police is now in charge of handling all leads and developments in terms of information or sightings, and relations with the authorities there in Peru,” Eric said.

The family’s fears had fallen on deaf ears until their dramatic Facebook post put the onus on public authorities to probe the case, but with social media since becoming inundated with comments, many in Spanish, judicial experts have taken charge.

“We have agreed to leave all communication now in the hands of the government experts,” he said — refusing to confirm or deny neither negative nor positive developments.

Poster friend Charlotte Hollander had forced the issue in appealing for information from anyone currently in Peru and said Natacha’s circle was “very worried”.

The Belgian foreign ministry had yet to respond to repeated calls from The Brussels Times, complicated by the absence of foreign minister Sophie Wilmes’ top team amid the intensifying conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

However, one official was quoted on national broadcaster RTBF as saying the ministry “has been made aware of her disappearance” and was “in contact with the family as well our officials in Peru”.


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