Wedding in forest
Wedding in forest iStock

A nine-year-old girl disappeared on Sunday while attending a family wedding in the French Alps.

The girl, Maëlys De Araujo, was last seen in a children's room in the town of Pont-de-Beauvoisin. She attended the wedding with her parents and older sister.

Authorities are searching the area with divers, cavers, police dogs, and helicopters. According to local police, the dogs lost all scent of De Araujo in the venue's parking lot.

A kidnapping investigation has been opened.

One of the guests, Grégoire, informed the Le Parisien news site of the incident as soon as he realized De Araujo was missing. Police have already spoken to most of the wedding guests.

According to Grégoire, "The DJ for the evening announced on the microphone that a child had disappeared. Suddenly, everyone started searching, in the main hall and outside."

"It was anguish. To see the disappearance of a nine-year-old, that's not nothing. We initially thought she must be asleep in a corner after a game of hide-and-seek. After an hour, as we'd found nothing, the police were alerted."

In a statement, the prosecutor's office noted that "the surrounding area is heavily wooded, with very dense vegetation."