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Japanese tourists in Ireland abandon hire car and vanish

shannon airportPolice in Ireland were today still searching for two Japanese tourists who abandoned their hire car in County Clare and then vanished. The couple rented a car at Shannon Airport when they arrived in the country on 18 August.

A Garda spokesperson said Ushio Azaki and Eiji Takagi had stayed at a couple of different inns and hotels, but the last confirmed sighting of them was in a pub at about 16:30 on 21 August. The officer said that on that same evening they stayed at a hotel in the region of Spanish Point.

The car rental company keeps track of its vehicles and said that the red Hyundai had been parked up at the scenic viewpoint of George’s Head on the 22 August at 21:00 and not moved since. The pair were due to fly back from Shannon Airport to London Heathrow and then on to Tokyo on 24 August.  

George’s Head is just to the north of the seaside town of Kilkee and Kilkee Golf Course and faces west to the Atlantic Ocean. Garda units, search and rescue helicopters, and the Irish Coast Guard service have been searching for the two tourists since it was confirmed they were missing.

Authorities said yesterday that they had found a man’s body at sea and in the environs of George’s Head. They stated it was not yet possible to confirm whether it was 63-year-old Mr Takagi. The spokesperson added that they will know more once the post mortem is carried out.

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