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Last Updated: Monday, 11 June 2007, 15:55 GMT 16:55 UK
Madeleine parents in Morocco trip
Kate and Gerry McCann
Kate and Gerry McCann thanked 100 young well-wishers
The parents of Madeleine McCann have been warmly met by dozens of Moroccan children as they took the search for their missing daughter to North Africa.

Kate and Gerry McCann were greeted in Morocco's capital, Rabat, by youngsters holding posters of their daughter.

The trip follows a reported sighting of a girl fitting Madeleine's description at a petrol station in Marrakech.

The four-year-old is thought to have been abducted from an apartment in the Algarve town of Praia da Luz on 3 May.

Mrs McCann said: "If Moroccan children are anything to go by we have a very good chance of getting Madeleine back."

'Return Madeleine'

She added that the reception was "very emotional, very lovely" and the "best welcome we could have had to Morocco".

We believe she will be found in whatever country she is in
Gerry McCann

The young crowd stood between two large posters, one of which read: "Stop! Return Madeleine to her Family. Please, please, please."

Mr McCann thanked the 100 Moroccan children for their show of solidarity.

He said: "It is totally unexpected and it gives us tremendous heart.

"We believe she will be found in whatever country she is in. I truly believe that if Madeleine is in Morocco we will find her."

Madeleine McCann
Madeleine McCann has now been missing for more than a month

The couple, from Rothley, Leicestershire, arrived in Casablanca on 10 June, and are expected to stay for two nights.

The couple have travelled across Europe in an effort to find their daughter since their daughter disappeared from their apartment while they were eating at a nearby restaurant.

Mr McCann said: "There has been no evidence that she is still in Portugal," said Mr McCann.

"We have concerns that she may have been moved from Portugal very early on and abducted. We have been to Spain and now Morocco to raise awareness of the disappearance."

The McCanns met with the British ambassador Charles Gray and Charqi Draiss, Morocco's most senior police officer.

The McCanns are expected to move out of their Mark Warner holiday apartment shortly.

On Saturday a family spokesman said the couple would probably remain in Portugal at least until the end of the summer.


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