HE IS just seven years old, has been missing for two days, and now his parents have admitted they left their son in the mountains of north Japan as ‘punishment’.
Yamato Tanooka has been lost in the Hokkaido mountains since Saturday, with his parents conceding yesterday he had not got lost as they hiked and foraged for vegetables as they first told police.
Now they have admitted they lied, and abandoned him in the area populated by brown bears to teach him a lesson. They left him alone for five minutes, and could not find him when they returned.
Hundreds of emergency service workers continue combing the area looking for Yamato.
His father told a TV Asahi reporter he did not dare admit the truth while requesting a search.
The parents walked about 500m away from their son before returning, TV Asahi reported.