A foreign minister has met with Brazil’s police chief to discuss the disappearance of a British journalist in the Amazon.
UK Dom Phillips and Brazilian Indigenous Affairs Officer Bruno Araujo Pereira disappeared from a remote part of the rainforest more than three days ago after being last seen in the community early Sunday of Sao Rafael.
Chelmsford MP Vicky Ford said she spoke with Brazilian Justice and Public Safety Minister Anderson Torres, who also heads the federal police, at the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles.
“I was assured that the Brazilian authorities are doing everything possible in the air, by boat and on land in difficult and remote terrain to find Dom and will continue to search,” the minister tweeted.
“The United Kingdom is ready to support the operation,” he added.
Mr Phillips’ sister said on Thursday she was still hoping to find him.
Sian Phillips joined the fans in a vigil for his brother and Mr. Pereira in front of the Brazilian embassy in central London.
In a statement to the press, Ms Phillips, who was wearing a red top and holding a red rose, with her partner Paul Sherwood and her twin brother Gareth Phillips by her side, said: “We had to come this morning to ask the question: Where is Dom Phillips? Where is Bruno Pereira?
“And we are also here for my brother’s wife, Alessandra Sampaio. We are also here with my brother’s nieces and nephews.
“We are here because Dom is missing, he is lost doing the important task of investigative journalism. We’re here to point out why it took me so long to start my brother and Bruno’s search.
“We want the search to continue.”
When asked about his chances of finding his brother, he added, “We all still have hope. We have hope.”
At 9:30 a.m., a letter was delivered to the Brazilian Ambassador by Greenpeace UK Executive Director Pat Venditti and the family of Mr. Phillips.
Louisa Casson, head of forests at Greenpeace UK, said the letter presented “an urgent call on the Brazilian government to devote all necessary local and federal resources to Bruno and Dom’s research mission”.
The vigil came after a 41-year-old suspect named Amarildo da Costa de Oliveira, also known as Pelado, was arrested for allegedly carrying a firearm without permission, a common practice in the region.
Police have not clarified why he was being treated as a suspect, but he is believed to have been among a group of men who threatened the couple near indigenous territory on Saturday.