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Newborn found abandoned in rubbish bin

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Marina Pajnik found the baby in this rubbish bin. Photo: ORF/Peter Matha
08:38 CET+01:00
A newborn boy who was found in a dustbin on Tuesday evening in Klagenfurt is now in a stable condition in hospital after almost dying of hypothermia.

22-year-old Marina Pajnik found the abandoned baby when she went out to take a bag of rubbish to the bins in front of her father's home in the St Ruprecht area. She said she could hear the sound of a baby crying and could hardly believe that it was coming from the rubbish bin.

After rummaging in the bin she found the naked child inside a bag, wrapped in a cloth. The mother of two called an ambulance and cradled the freezing baby in her arms until the medics arrived. The baby's body temperature was just 21C, and he would not have survived outside in below freezing temperatures for much longer.

He was taken to Klagenfurt hospital's pediatric intensive care unit and his body temperature was gradually raised. Doctor Stefan Ring said that the child arrived in a critical condition and at present it is unclear whether he has suffered any permanent damage.

The baby is of European descent, is a healthy weight, and was probably born on January 5th. Doctors have urged the mother to come forward as she may need urgent medical care. They said it was deeply regrettable that she felt she had to abandon her baby, and that an anonymous birth would have been possible in Klagenfurt hospital.

Several hospitals in Carinthia now offer this service, and if the mother wishes the baby is put up for adoption - a decision which can be revoked within six months.

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Police spokesman Rainer Dionisio said that the woman must have felt desperate and therefore police are more concerned about her welfare than about punishing her. Anyone who has information which could lead to finding her is asked to contact the Carinthian police department on 0599133/ 201011. All information will be treated confidentially.

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