Children playing on a beach near Sydney, Australia, have found the body of a baby buried under the sand, Australian authorities have said.
The two brothers, aged six and seven years old, found the body whilst digging in sand dunes in the beachside suburb of Maroubra.
Police forensics units are combing the area of the beach and have declared it a crime scene.
The baby’s body was in an advanced state of decomposition and buried 30cm below the surface of the beach, local public broadcaster the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reports.
A spokesperson for New South Wales Police said: “Police from Eastern Beaches Local Area Command were called to the beach and have established a crime scene which will be examined by specialist forensic officers.
“Officers from the police rescue squad are also on scene and investigations into the child’s death are continuing, however, the age and sex of the child are yet to be determined.”
Police said the two boys who had discovered the body were being given counselling, as would some officers involved in the investigation.
The local mayor Ted Seng stressed in a statement that the beach on which the body was found was “more isolated” than others in the area.
"South Maroubra is one of our more isolated beaches, but it is patrolled by Randwick Council Lifeguards and volunteer surf life savers from South Maroubra Surf Life Saving Club," Mr Seng said.
"To say that I'm shocked is an understatement. I cannot imagine the circumstances that lead to this tragic event. Our thoughts and the thoughts of the whole Randwick community are with this little lost soul and the family and loved ones."Reuse content