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April Jones search officers receive 2,500 calls from public

One of the police officers leading the search for April Jones has said he is "very heartened" that the force has received more than 2,500 phone calls with information.

Superintendent Ian John, from Dyfed Powys Police, said police officers from across England and Wales are helping to field the calls.

Wearing a pink ribbon in support of a campaign by the five-year-old's family, Mr John said investigators remain "determined" to find the little girl, who has been missing since Monday.

Searches will continue regardless of the weather conditions, he told reporters.

Mr John said: "I want to turn to April's family. I'm sure we all are feeling for them at this terrible time, also the friends and the extended family.

"I just want to remind everybody that's why we're here tonight, in the pouring rain in Machynlleth, is to focus on the search and do everything that we can to bring this operation to a conclusion."

He added: "I think what we've got to hold on to is that we continue our search, and the good news is that everybody is determined to follow this through."

Last night's press conference was held at the leisure centre in Machynlleth, which has been used to co-ordinate hundreds of volunteers who have offered to help in the search for April.

More than 400 people have registered their contact information and details of any specialist skills with police.

Thanking all the volunteers, Mr John said: "All in all, we've had outstanding co-operation from members of the public, not just from this community. It quite takes you away really, it's quite a humbling experience."

The force is being supported nationally to answer all the calls with information.

"Following the appeals for information that we've made, we've received over 2,500 calls from the public," Mr John told reporters.

"All those need to be answered, and that is being done by all police forces throughout the country who have worked together to support the Child Alert line."

He said that the number of calls showed that the public want to assist police.

"I'm very heartened by it, it shows that the public care and want to help us."

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