Death of woman in woods ‘not suspicious’

Remains linked to missing student Yulia Solodyankina are not thought to suggest suspicious circumstances, police say. Picture: Contributed
Remains linked to missing student Yulia Solodyankina are not thought to suggest suspicious circumstances, police say. Picture: Contributed
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THE death of a woman found in woodland and believed to be missing Russian student Yulia Solodyankina is not being treated as suspicious.

Police carried out a post-mortem examination yesterday but are awaiting the results of further forensic tests before making a formal identification.

The disappearance of Miss Solodyankina, 22, a dancer with fire and drums group Anansi and a physics student at Edinburgh University, triggered a nationwide search.

Her friends in Edinburgh and parents in Moscow made desperate appeals for information.

Her boyfriend, Antoine Dao, was among those who made public appeals for her return. He said she had been “very stressed” about her university exams before going missing.

Posters featured a message in Russian from her father, reading: “Yulia, come back, we love you. Nothing else matters.”

Yesterday, the Russian Consulate in Edinburgh said it was keeping in close contact with Yulia’s parents, Ekatarina and Dmitry.

Her friends in Edinburgh, who had launched a Facebook page “Yulia Solodyankina Missing Person” said they would make a statement once police identified the body.

Miss Solodyankina was last seen leaving a gig at the Wee Red Bar in Edinburgh’s Lady Lawson Street, at about 9pm on 6 June. She was reported missing six days later.

There were concerns she might have become depressed after discovering she had failed exams.

Fears grew after it emerged she had left many of her personal belongings at her flat, including her phone, laptop and passport.

She was last seen on CCTV at Glasgow’s Buchanan Street bus station at 4:55pm on 7 June.

Police believed she may have boarded a bus to the Highlands or Argyll.

The badly decomposed remains were found in woodland near the A83, just west of Arrochar, at the north end of Loch Long last Thursday. Police have not said how long they believe the body had been there.

In June, Miss Solodyankina’s father travelled to Scotland to see her. He had been due to meet her at Waverley station but instead joined the search for her.

Speaking at the time, he said: “The last time her mother and I spoke to her was on the evening of Wednesday, 5 June. She said that she felt a little bit ill and asked her mother what to do in case of a strong cough.

“Then we discussed my visit, clearing up the details. She promised to meet me in Waverley station on Thursday, 13 June, because it was my first visit to Edinburgh.”

Tilofey Kunitsky, of the Russian Consulate in Edinburgh, said: “Starting from the date of Yulia’s disappearance, her parents have been in permanent touch with police and we have assisted in communications when required.

“There has been no confirmation yet so there is nothing at this stage which we can add. When there is, police will decide whether to contact the parents through ourselves or directly.”

Police Scotland said: “Formal identification has still to take place and further forensic examinations, including DNA tests, are to be carried out.

“However, there appear to be no suspicious circumstances in connection with the death.”