Rescuers searching for teenage boy in highland Svaneti, Black Sea coastline

The teenager has been missing since leaving home on July 18. Photo via Facebook., 26 Jul 2020 - 15:09, Tbilisi,Georgia

Rescuers from Georgia's emergency services are looking for traces of Ilia Pilpani, a teenager missing since last week, in the highland Svaneti province in the north and on the Black Sea coastline in the west of the country.

About 80 rescue professionals are involved in the effort, with drones also used to locate the 13-year-old boy who left his home on a bicycle on July 18.

Pilpani, who doesn't speak Georgian and moved to Svaneti a year ago after living in Kazakhstan, left the home in the village of Lenjeri near the Mestia Municipality in the mountainous province.

Rocky and wooden landscape in the vicinity of the area where the boy went missing has been complicating the search, conducted by professionals as well as locals.

The search is also being conducted on the Black Sea coast, with a helicopter on standby. Meanwhile an investigation has been launched into possible kidnapping of the teenager.