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Somali teenager ‘still a missing person’

By Paul Ainsworth

A TEENAGE girl missing from the South Belfast area for three months could be with members of migrant communities in Britain, it has been suggested.

Despite an ongoing PSNI investigation into the whereabouts of 16-year-old Somali girl Nadra Sharis Ali, there have been no leads in the case since she was reported missing after visiting the Belfast Islamic Centre off the Lisburn Road on January 14.

Nadra, who is believed to have been placed with a foster family in the Castlereagh area after fleeing a brutal conflict in her home country, is still regarded as a missing person by police, and the situation has caused “ongoing concern” in Belfast’s own small Somali refugee community.

The South Belfast News reported how members of that community initially expressed frustration at the lack of details from authorities about the girl, claiming that they could assist more if they knew more about her individual situation.

However, with the case seemingly having ground to a halt, a spokesman for the local Somali community said it was likely that if Nadra is alive, then she could be across the water, where immigrant communities are much larger. The youngster was last seen wearing an orange and black burka robe with a black fur-lined hooded coat.

“Unfortunately there is still no details of this young girls whereabouts, and the level of concern for her safety remains the same among our community,” Botanic-based Suleiman Abdullah said.

“Of course we hope she is well, and if she is then I would think it unlikely she has left the UK, so it could be she is in England with other Somali people. Of course, we can’t know for sure, even if in the best-case scenario this is the likely option. As far as we’re concerned we are still appealing for anyone with information to come forward, and in places where the Somali community would congregate, such as the Belfast Islamic Centre, Nadra’s poster is still on display.”

A spokesman for the Islamic Centre said they were unaware of any new information relating to the hunt for Nadra, while the PSNI confirmed she is still being treated as a missing person.


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