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'There are party places that would surprise many of my European and American colleagues'

We must be faster than fear

By 0 and 0 and 0
17 September 2014


Memorial to missing children by Liza Alert in Moscow. Picture:

Grigory Sergeyev is founder and chairman of 'Liza Alert', a pioneering Russian voluntary group which use the talents and the goodwill of their dedicated online supporters to hunt for kidnapped children, a problem which unites all countries, knows no frontiers, and terrifies families everywhere.

Here, he agonises over the fate of Vika, a three year old snatched and murdered by a human monster from her kindergarten in the historic city of Tomsk in Siberia. 

'I was deeply worried for our volunteers when we got a group of them ready to begin searches in Tomsk. I was worried for them because I knew, all too well, the feeling they were likely to get at the end of their searches  - and I was so desperately hoping that their hunt would end differently. 

'This is what we are like, when via the people who work for Liza Alert, you feel their pain. We are like the nervous system of our organisation. 

'In situations like this the strategy is clear - to co-operate and get searching as soon as we possibly can, to try and snatch whatever small chance Vika had from her destiny's teeth. We had to follow the route of a mass information attack, which always helps when a child is alive. 

'In order to make this attack bring right results all of us - volunteers, local businessmen, local officials, their neighbours  - must get together like one fist. 

'We had it all in Tomsk, with the exception of just one  - time. 

Liza Alert

Memorial to missing children by Liza Alert in Moscow. Picture:

'Bloody maniacs who act according to statistics and only leave their victims this (tiny) amount of time after kidnapping. There is a bloody stability of their behaviour all around the world. 

'We've got to act faster. We have to learn. 

'We must be faster than fear spreading in the air. We've got to start mass searches during the first three hours after the kidnap. Please remember this figure. 

'We know that in Russia we will be getting towards it for a long, long time. But we will get there. 

'We will break the mentality - and we will make it happen'.

* If you can help 'Liza Alert' in any way, please do

Comments (3)

Jerzy, Wellington
25/09/2014 11:36
If you are sure it is a kidnap, you can start searching right away. But I can imagine most child disappearances only later turn out to be a kidnap. Also a mother can make an accusation of kidnap on her former husband and dangerous situations may arise there in a volunteer search. It would be informative to know how Grigory Sergeyev tackles the issues with false alerts of kidnap upon disappearance of children.
Searching for missing children who walked in the woods is fine, but this can be done more effectively by professional search and rescue teams working closely with the police. Maybe volunteers get hurt when they start searching on their own and get disoriented themselves...
Gerard, The Hague
24/09/2014 15:24
In a way this this is the most saddest of stories...because children should never have to face this evil in their childhood or for that matter (ever in their lives). It's a world wide evil & everything should be done to combat it & even prevent it.

To this voluntary group...well done...& good luck in the future with your great work in rescuing children in harms way.
jojnjo, Dublin
23/09/2014 23:03

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