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Explorer Who Once Ate His Own Dog Now Missing Once Again In Search Of Lost Tribe

BBC / Jo Sarsby

A modern-day explorer and writer has disappeared into the jungles of Papua, New Guinea looking for a tribe that has no contact with the outside world. He was dropped into the remote region three weeks ago and has recently missed his rendezvous to return home.

It's not the first time that adventurer Benedict Allen has gone missing while out in the wilderness. The father-of-three has been criticized for his habit of not bringing a phone or GPS tracking device to alert his family and colleagues to his location.

He has accomplished incredible things throughout his lifetime, including being the first person to navigate the widest part of the Amazon Basin, and the only known person to have crossed the Gobi Desert with camels alone.

But sometimes, his adventures come at a terrible cost.

On this trip, Benedict was intending to meet with the Yaifo, a tribe he had met decades earlier and who gave him a ritual form of tattoo to welcome him.

His older sister, Katie Pestille, says his family is worried, but that he has defied the odds before, like when he went missing in Brazil at age 22. He was travelling across the Amazon at the time and was not heard from for three months.  

"Unfortunately that is not Benedict's style, he likes to do things the hard way. But he's done loads of expeditions in the past and he knows how to survive," she says. "He knows what plants can be eaten and which ones can be used as medicines and he carries a survival belt with him."

During his travels across Brazil, he came across a small dog who had an injured paw. He nursed it back to health, but soon after he was attacked by local miners who took all of his belongings.

He described the harrowing experience to reporters. "I was starving to death – the only thing left was to eat the dog" he said.

Bendict was scheduled to give a talk in Hong Kong this week. However, nothing has been heard from him yet.

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