Search for boy, 7, left in bear-infested woods by parents

Parents left him for five minutes ‘to discipline him’

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Search for boy, 7, left in bear-infested woods by parents

A search is under way for a seven-year-old boy who was left in a bear-infested wood by his parents as a punishment.

Over 100 volunteers and emergency teams resumed the search in woodland near the town of Nanae in Hokkaido on Monday morning after Yamato Tanooka's parents reported him missing on Saturday.

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They initially claimed that he had wandered off while they were foraging for vegetables, however reportedly later admitted that they had driven off and left him as a punishment for throwing stones at cars, reports the Telegraph.

Mr Tanooka, 44, said he and his wife had stopped the car about half a mile up the road, before returning to find their son had disappeared. He said they had left him for around five minutes.

The bears in the area are known as Ussuri brown bears, and there are an estimated 3,000 of them on Hokkaido.

Two men have been killed in bear attacks in northern Japan already this month.

The Mirror reports that in 1915, seven people were killed after a huge 9ft tall brown bear attacked the same Hokkaido village twice over the space of six days.

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