Family of missing schoolgirl Nora Quoirin insist she was abducted despite police protests

The family of the British schoolgirl missing in Malaysia have insisted she was abducted - despite authorities saying there is no evidence of criminal activity.

Nora Quoirin, 15, was reported missing on Sunday morning after she was left seen in her bedroom at the Dusun resort in southern Negeri Sembilan state.

On Tuesday, authorities in Malaysia said more than 160 people from different emergency services are now trying to find Nora, who has special needs and learning difficulties.

Sniffer dogs, helicopters, fire and rescue services, civil defence and forestry departments have all been deployed to search the dense jungle and hilly terrain.

Nora Quoirin with her mother Meabh (left) and authorities carrying out a search for the missing 15-year-old. Credit: PA/ AP

However Nora's family said they do not believe that she wandered off.

"Nora's family believe she has been abducted," the statement said. "We are especially worried because Nora has learning and developmental disabilities, and is not like other 15-year-olds. She looks younger, she is not capable of taking care of herself, and she won't understand what is going on."

"She never goes anywhere by herself. We have no reason to believe she wandered off and is lost," the family said.

Negeri Sembilan police chief Mohamad Mat Yusop said the girl's disappearance was still being treated as a missing person case because there was no evidence to indicate she was abducted.

He said sniffer dogs picked up the girl's scent within 100 meters from her resort bedroom but the trail stopped there.

Mohamad said the girl's mother had reported that she was only in her undergarments when they put her to bed but it was unclear if she was dressed when she disappeared because nobody saw her leave.

"We have no clues, no evidence to say this case is abduction," the police chief said at a news conference. "We will do our very best. We will not give up hope. We believe that she didn't go far and that she had lost her way."

State deputy police chief Che Zakaria Othman said local indigenous people – known as Orang Asli – have joined the search for Nora, the daughter of an Irish-French couple who have lived in London for around 20 years.

Mr Othman told local media: “We’ve got a platoon from the general operations force as well as a police canine team to look for Nora Anne.”

He added CCTV at the location Nora and her family were staying was limited to the front reception.

“The girl’s passport and other belongings are with the family,” he said.

Missing persons charity the Lucie Blackman Trust (LBT) said they believed Nora had been abducted, but police are not currently treating her disappearance as a criminal investigation.

The girl’s family also said they were treating the disappearance as a “criminal matter”.

Speaking to LBT from Belfast, Nora’s aunt, Aisling Agnew, said: “Nora’s parents and relatives in Ireland and France are distraught by her disappearance.

Meabh Quoirin with her daughter Nora who has gone missing while on holiday in Malaysia Credit: Family handout/PA

“Nora is a child with special needs and has learning and developmental disabilities which make her especially vulnerable and we fear for her safety.

“Nora would not know how to get help and would never leave her family voluntarily.

“We now consider this a criminal matter. We are appealing to everyone to assist the local police in any way they can and to pass on any information that would help locate our beloved Nora without delay.”

Nora Quoirin has gone missing in Malaysia Credit: PA

Nora's father alerted authorities when he discovered she was missing from her bedroom at 8am local time on Sunday. Her window was left open.

Nora, whose mother Meabh is originally from Belfast and whose father is French, is understood to have been travelling on an Irish passport.

A spokesman for Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs said: “We are aware of the case and providing consular assistance.”

An online fundraising page set up by Nora’s aunt has raised more than £10,000.

The fundraiser on says Nora’s families in Ireland and France are “distraught”, adding: “More family members are travelling to Malaysia to participate in the search and rescue effort and would appreciate donations to cover any unforeseen expenses or charges incurred in the process.”