Australia

Morrison prays for Alek Sigley after disappearance in North Korea

Scott Morrison offers his prayers for missing Alek Sigley Source: AAP / Twitter

Scott Morrison has offered prayers for Australian man Alek Sigley who was living in North Korea before he disappeared last week.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says he prayed for the safe return of Australian man Alek Sigley who remains missing in North Korea.

A week since the 29-year-old Perth tour guide last contacted friends or relatives, Mr Morrison said he was unable to shed any light on his whereabouts. 

29 year old Perth man Alek Sigley
Perth man Alek Sigley was a prolific blogger about life in North Korea.
AAP

"I'm seeking and receiving regular updates. But this morning, in the absence of those and indeed regardless of that, prayer is my response."

The prime minister made the comments outside a Canberra church after a service to mark the re-opening of Parliament. 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison addresses the Parliamentary church service for the commencement of parliament at the St Christopher's Catholic Cathedral in Manuka, in Canberra, Tuesday, 2 July 2019. (AAP Image/Sam Mooy) NO ARCHIVING
Prime Minister Scott Morrison addresses the Parliamentary church service ahead of the first session of the 46th Parliament.
AAP

"This is a troubling situation and concerning situation and we will be continuing to use every effort that we have to locate him and hopefully bring him home safely," Mr Morrison said.  

Mr Sigley, who was living and studying in the hermit kingdom and speaks Korean fluently, has not communicated with relatives or used his social media accounts since Tuesday morning last week. His family says it's very unusual for him to be out of contact. 

Mr Morrison spoke directly to Mr Sigley's family last week from Osaka where he was attending the G20 summit. 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says Alek Sigley's disappearance is very troubling.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison says Alek Sigley's disappearance is very troubling.
AAP

He also discussed the matter with other G20 leaders, who he said offered cooperation and assistance. 

The Department of Foreign Affairs have been providing consular assistance to Mr Sigley's family. 

Australia does not have a diplomatic presence in North Korea, but is working with the Swedish government which has an embassy in Pyongyang. 

There are fears Mr Sigley, believed to be the only Australian living in North Korea, has been detained, but authorities have been unable to confirm that. 

- Additional reporting by AAP

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