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Sources say the boy responded to questions in English. Image Credit: Dubai Police

Dubai: The mystery surrounding a five-year-old boy found wandering alone in Reef Mall over 10 days ago continues as Dubai Police are still trying to ascertain his parent's whereabouts.

Gulf News has learnt from sources privy to the case that the boy was abandoned by his mother. A woman who was looking after him in Sharjah abandoned him in the mall where a Filipina found him and handed him over to Muraqabbat Police Station on Saturday, September 7.

According to Dubai Public Prosecution, the boy’s case hasn’t yet been referred to Dubai Family and Juvenile Prosecution.

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police identify the missing child COURTESY DUBAI POLICE

The boy, believed to be of Asian origin, has been transferred to the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children, until his case can be solved, according to a Dubai Police official.

Afra Al Basti, Executive Director of the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children (DFWC), confirmed that the boy had been in the foundation’s care for more than a week, but she said it is not clear what will happen next.

“The boy has been in the foundation for more than a week,” Al Basti told Gulf News. “We provided him with shelter, rehabilitation and care, but don’t yet know the whereabouts of his parents,” she added.

Al Basti said that they are awaiting a decision from the concerned authorities over what will happen next to the boy.

“Any further decision will be taken by the concerned authorities like Dubai Police,” she said. “What will happen to the boy? We don’t know what the decision is yet. Is there anyone who will adopt the child? We don’t know if his parents are known, or if they know whether he is missing or not,” she added.

Earlier, Dubai Police at Al Muraqabaat station asked for help from the public to identify the boy and reunite him with his family, but unfortunately no news has been forthcoming.

Meanwhile, after reporting the boy’s story last week, on September 8, many readers called Gulf News, offering their help to the boy.

Some readers offered to welcome the boy in their homes to live with their children until they found his parents, while others wanted to help in paying his expenses and needs.

DFWC, calls on readers to contact the foundation if they want to provide help or donations.

People can contact the foundation on 04-6060300 or through funding@dfwac.ae

What is Dubai Foundation for Women and Children?

DFWC is the first licensed non-profit shelter in the UAE for women and children, who are victims of domestic violence, child abuse, or human trafficking. It was established in July 2007 to offer victims immediate protection and support in accordance with international human rights obligations. DFWC protect and support women and children through the provision of safe housing and rehabilitation services and prevent various forms of violence through community education programmes.