A police officer who was believed to have died in the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami has reportedly been found alive and living in a psychiatric hospital more than 16 years later.
Abrip Asep had been on duty the night the Indian Ocean earthquake struck on December 26, 2004, his family said. The resulting tsunami killed more than 230,000 people, making it one of the biggest natural disasters.
His relatives believed he was among those killed in Indonesia's westernmost province of Aceh when waves up to 30m high swept in over Southeast Asia.
By chance Asep was found and reunited with his family after nearly two decades apart, according to local media. The discovery was made after photos of Asep were shared on a family group chat on social media.
Local police confirmed the man found in the psychiatric hospital was Asep, who was reported missing during the tsunami and later declared dead.
"I couldn't believe it, 17 years of no news and we thought that he passed away, we didn't know he was still alive," a family member said.
Asep was found in a psychiatric hospital in Aceh province after suffering from trauma after witnessing the tsunami. He is said to be in good health.
"Even though he is experiencing mental illness due to the tsunami, his family is very grateful to have found him alive," a spokesperson for the Aceh Regional Police said.
It is unclear why his family were not notified he was in the psychiatric hospital.
On Boxing day 2004 a 9.1-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of the island of Sumatra, Indonesia.
It was the third largest earthquake to ever be recorded.
Within 20 minutes of the earthquake, the first of several 30m waves hit the shoreline of Indonesia's Aceh province.
Indonesia was worst hit by the tsunami, suffering at least 167,000 casualties.
Tsunami waves hit coastlines in Thailand, India, and Sri Lanka, and as far away as southern Africa, killing tens of thousands more.