8 Aug 2014

Girl found alive a decade after tsunami

8:01 am on 8 August 2014

An Indonesian girl swept away in the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami has been reunited with her parents 10 years after she was given up for dead.

Aceh Province in Indonesia was devastated in 2004 by the Indian Ocean tsunami.

Aceh Province in Indonesia was devastated in 2004 by the Indian Ocean tsunami. Photo: AFP FILE

Raudhatul Jannah was 4 when she and her brother were swept away by tsunami waters from her home in Aceh province on 26 December 2004.

The girl's mother, Jamaliah, said she and her husband believed she was dead until Jamaliah's brother spotted a girl who looked like her lost daughter in June of this year.

They later learned the girl had been under the care of an elderly woman, and the family were reunited this week.

"My husband and I are very happy we have found her," Jamaliah said.

"This is a miracle from God."

Jamaliah said she had no doubt that the girl was her daughter as soon as she saw her.

"If anyone is in doubt, I'm ready for DNA tests," she said.

Jamaliah said after the tsunami hit her house, Raudhatul and her brother, then 7, slipped from her and her husband's grasp as they held on to a floating plank of wood.

Raudhatul, now 14, had told her parents that her brother was likely to have survived after the two were stranded on Banyak Island, her mother said.

"We will look for him on Banyak Island because we believe he is still alive," she said.

The sparsely inhabited island group is around 40 kilometres off the coast.

The Indian Ocean tsunami, triggered by a massive earthquake off Sumatra island, killed 230,000 people in 14 countries, including 170,000 in Aceh.