The Portuguese inquiry into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann has been reopened amid new leads in the case.
Six years on from her disappearance, Portuguese police are set to re-open the case into missing Leicestershire girl Madeleine McCann.
Detectives have ruled out the key sighting that underpinned the original Madeleine McCann investigation and adopted a new focus in the hunt.
Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, has suggested British and Portuguese police should join together as a team, in order to establish exactly what happened to missing Madeleine McCann.
After Portuguese authorities admitted last month there was enough new information to justify reopening the case, after shelving their own inquiry back in 2008, Commissioner Hogan-Howe said:
One thing we'd like to see in the future is a joint investigation team which comes under the European community. It is a possibility legally and we're working together at a political level, at a police and judicial level, to see how we can construct that...
...So that's what we're trying to get; an agreement between the two governments and the two police services.
The public have responded in their thousands to the recent television appeals concerning the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
Detective Chief Inspector Andy Redwood, a senior investigator in the case, said numerous people present in Praia da Luz at the time she went missing have come forward.
Speaking on BBC's Crimewatch programme, he said:
The media appeals produced a fantastic response from the public in all three countries, with a total of 3,500 calls and messages in the UK, 850 in Germany and 650 in Holland...
...Lots of people have called to say they were in Praia da Luz at the time. All of this information has obviously produced a very large volume of work for the Operation Grange team to work through.
The response has also had a huge impact in Portugal, where enough new evidence was uncovered last month for authorities there to consider reopening the case.
DCI Redwood went on to say:
I have been in Faro this week working with police colleagues, and I know the appeal generated a large number of calls to the Portuguese police also.
I'd like to thank the media and the public for their continued assistance in this challenging enquiry.
The McCanns have described new reports about a man Portuguese police allegedly suspect kidnapped Madeleine as "pure speculation".
The 40-year-old had been fired from the Ocean Club holiday complex in Praia de Luz where the McCanns were staying when their daughter disappeared on May 3, 2007, and may have been seeking revenge, Portuguese daily Correio da Manha said.
He died in a tractor accident in 2009 but police have interviewed his widow as part of their new investigation, according to the newspaper.
Clarence Mitchell, who represents Kate and Gerry McCann, said: "We are aware of reports in the Portuguese press.
"They are pure speculation and the McCanns are not going to give a running commentary on every new report."
The former hotel employee who Portuguese police are investigating over Madeleine McCann's kidnapping could have snatched her out of revenge after being sacked, newspaper Correio da Manha reported.
The 40-year-old died in a tractor accident in 2009 - two years after Madeleine went missing - and police have already questioned his widow, the paper said.
He was identified as the Portuguese police's main suspect after they reportedly discovered from tests on his mobile phone that he was near the holiday apartment in Praia de Luz when she went missing.
The flat the McCanns were staying in is a 15 minute drive to the town of Lagos where the suspect was living at the time after he stopped working at the Ocean Club.
Portuguese police are now said to be searching for her body in the belief he may have killed her, the paper adds.
A source close to Madeleine McCann's parents has told ITV News that they are "aware" Portuguese police are investigating the possibility a former employee at the hotel in Praia de Luz where the family were staying may have kidnapped her.
It is understood the 40-year-old man died in a tractor accident in 2009 - two years after Madeleine disappeared.
Officers have said that they will travel regularly to Portugal as part of the UK investigation, following a meeting with Portuguese police, the Met Police said in a statement.
Assistance Commander Mark Rowley, specialist crime and operations, said: "The meeting was very positive, and we and the Policia Judiciara have a shared determination to do everything possible to discover what happened to Madeleine.
"Colleagues in Portugal fully shared with us the developments in their review, and the fact that they were taking the significant step of applying for the investigation to be formally reopened.
"From the near future, MPS detectives from Operation Grange will travel regularly to Portugal under the terms of the ILOR in relation to the UK investigation."
This is a very significant development in the search for Madeleine, for an investigation to be re-opened there has to be a substantial amount of new evidence and it is clear that the Attorney General feels that the review which has been going on in Portugal has generated that information.
This is also completely separate from the investigation by the British police, so it is quite significant that we have two investigations both finding new things that need to be looked at.
We understand that already police officers from this Portuguese review are on the Algarve, starting to work out a plan of action, who they wish to speak to, what questions they want to put to them.
Amongst that group we think there are a number of men who were though to be in the area at the time who have been on various sex offenders registers both in Portugal and abroad.
What is important about this is it seems to suggest they are moving towards the thought that Madeleine may have been taken by a foreign group of paedophiles.
The investigation team who have been working on this are all specialists in child abduction. Child abduction is not something the Portuguese were absolutely sure had taken place in the early days of this investigation, so it is quite telling that they have shifted their focus that way.
Madeleine McCann's parents Kate and Gerry said today they are "very pleased" that Portuguese authorities plan to re-open their investigation into her disappearance.
They have said they hope that it will uncover "the answers we so desperately need".
According to the Metropolitan Police, who will be working with the Portuguese investigators on the case, "new lines of enquiry" have opened up which warranted the investigation being re-opened.