THE mother of a teenager who went missing on January 5 when he was out in a stolen canoe on the Mar Menor lagoon, has said that she believes he is still alive

15-year-old Ivo Petrov was with two friends- aged 16 and 22- when the craft capsized.

They managed to stay afloat in the ice cold water for two hours despite being unable to swim, but Ivo’s disappearance remains shrouded in mystery.

A Los Alcazares resident heard cries for help in the dock area at around 2.30am and a rescue team pulled them out, with the men suffering from hypothermia and requiring hospital treatment.

An extensive search for Ivo has being going on since then but neither he nor his belongings have been found.

SEARCH TEAM BRIEFS LOS ALCAZARES MAYOR, MARIO PEREZ CERVERA

Expert Guardia Civil divers have been utilised during the operation and specially-trained dogs that can sniff out bodies in water were also drafted in.

At an emotional news conference held on Monday at the Atrio hotel in Los Alcazares, Ivo’s Bulgarian mother, Miglena Petrova said: “I only want one thing and that is for the search to continue to find my son, as I think he is still alive.”

MIGLENA PETROVA

The Petrov family does not believe the accounts given by the two survivors and the Guardia Civil has admitted that there were ‘contradictions’ in their statements, although their main theory is that Ivo drowned.

They nevertheless are open to the view the his body is not in the lagoon.

“I want to know the truth,“ said Miglena Petrova.

“The idea to go out that night was not Ivo’s and his friends are not being entirely truthful,” she added.

The family’s lawyer, Veronica Ene said she was waiting for the Guardia Civil’s report before considering any private legal action.

“We really want to know what happened that night and why her son never returned home,” said Ene.

A ‘flip-flop’ shoe belonging to Ivo has appeared but nothing else, with experts surprised that his body has not yet surfaced which is the normal case due to natural decomposition as a result of drowning.

Los Alcazares mayor, Mario Perez Cervera, said that he has been assured that the search will continue for as long as necessary, with extra resources being drafted in.

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