Source AP ©

Dead body found near car of US diplomat missing in Cyprus

Cyprus' police chief said Monday a man's body has been found in a rural area of western Cyprus, near a car belonging to a senior American diplomat missing for four days.

Iakovos Papacostas could not confirm that the body was that of Lt. Col. Thomas Mooney, the U.S. embassy's military attache, who disappeared with his car on Thursday.

Earlier, CyBC state radio said the body had been identified as Mooney.

Papacostas told The Associated Press the body was found 150 meters (yards) from Mooney's car - a black Chevrolet Impala - in the Lefka area, around 45 kilometers (28 miles) west of the capital, Nicosia.

He said the vehicle was spotted by a man exercising his dogs in the area on Sunday. Police have sealed off the scene and are carrying out investigations.

The U.S. embassy in Nicosia could not immediately confirm the body was Mooney's

On Saturday, the embassy posted a message on its web site - with photos of Mooney and his car - urging anyone with information to contact the police.

Mooney had served as military attache in Cyprus since June 2006.