Learning English - Words in the News
10 September, 2007 - Published 12:17 GMT
The McCanns still hope to find their missing daughter
The parents of a missing British girl, Madeleine McCann, are back in Britain more than four months after their daughter disappeared in Portugal. Tom Esslemont looks back on the events that have taken place since she went missing:
Madeleine McCann disappeared more than four months ago from an apartment in the small Portuguese resort of Praia de Luz. Kate and Gerry McCann say they returned from eating in a restaurant a short distance away, to find their daughter missing - she's not yet been found.
The McCanns have stayed in Portugal since Madeleine's disappearance, where they have at times been the focus of close media scrutiny. They seemed to use that interest to their advantage, launching an international campaign to keep the story in the public eye. Pictures of Madeleine were posted on a special website, in airports and police stations around the world.
The McCann's have found strength in their own religious faith in the past months, even though admitting times of doubt. Travelling to the Vatican weeks after Madeleine's disappearance, they were given a brief audience with the Pope.
In this and all public appearances, the McCanns have always seemed calm, even after the dramatic turn of events of recent days which saw them being named as official suspects by Portuguese police. In interviews with British newspapers, the McCanns have accused the police of trying to frame them in the case. Officers say Portuguese law prevents them from responding to that accusation.
The McCanns have said they wanted to return to Britain for the sake of their twins. But on Saturday a family friend said, they were determined that the focus of the investigation does not shift away from trying to find Madeleine.
Tom Esslemont, BBC
the focus of close media scrutiny
to their advantage
to keep the story in the public eye
given a brief audience with
dramatic turn of events
to frame them
for the sake of