How the events have unfolded so far.
January 15, 9pm: Little Mikaeel Kular is put to bed by his mother. He usually shares the room with his sister, but this night sleeps alone as he is suffering a cold. January 16, 7.15am: His mother, Rosdeep Kular, enters the bedroom to wake Mikaeel but finds it deserted. She raises the alarm with police and a frantic search of the Ferry Gait Crescent property begins. A team of officers begins scouring through the house and garden but finds no sign of the three-year-old.
9.01am: Police trigger missing child alert on social media. Press and broadcasters respond with blanket coverage of the incident across Britain.
9.05am: Officers with sniffer dogs begin house-to-house searches of homes in Muirhouse, Silverknowes and Drylaw. There is no sign of Mikaeel.
10.45am: A press conference is held at Police HQ in Fettes. Superintendent Liz McAinsh says there is no evidence to suggest criminality but that they are “keeping on open mind” about the missing child. Mikaeel’s jacket and shoes are not found within the property. Police say he “may have left of his own volition”. Mother Rosdeep Kular is said to be “distraught”.
11.15am: Members of the local community join police search teams in searching the local area. In the skies a helicopter provides hi-tech surveillance. Taxi drivers are enlisted to search Silverknowes, Drylaw, and Muirhouse. A group of volunteers aid police and grows to 60-strong. Noon: A flurry of activity as police vehicles scream away from Ferry Gait Crescent towards Pennywell Road before arriving at an address in Waterfront Gait, Granton. Officers swarm the area – one mile from the Kular family home – and a man is taken from a property and led into a police car. Police initially confirm the man is linked to the Mikaeel investigation but later deny he has been detained in relation to the missing person’s case.
2pm: Coastguards and RNLI crews begin scouring the shoreline at Cramond and Drylaw area as the hunt for Mikaeel is heightened. A second helicopter is spotted hovering above Muirhouse. It is thought thermal imaging technology is being used to help trace the missing three-year-old.
2.30pm: MPs in the House of Commons express hope Mikaeel will be safely returned to his family. Mike Crockart, MP for Edinburgh West, “fervently hopes” for a positive outcome.
4.20pm: A telephone line is established as part of a Child Rescue Alert, supported by all police forces across the UK.
4.30pm: Police hold second press conference providing an updated description and announce the launch of emergency hotline. Mikaeel is said to have had a faded scar on the bridge of his nose and a sore on the left-hand side of his mouth. He may be wearing a grey pyjama top with an embroidered turquoise dinosaur on the chest and black gloves with multi-coloured fingers.