The Thai navy says at least four boys among a group of 12 and their soccer coach have been rescued from a cave where they had been trapped for over two weeks. The Thai Navy SEAL Commander has stated that they have no choice but to attempt the tricky extraction from the Thang Luang cave before the cave is flooded with the imminent monsoon rain.
It is unclear exactly how the boys will be moved but it appears that the journey will include some diving and walking in areas where the water level permits.
The rescued boys were rushed to hospital on Sunday night.
He added that the boys had all been assessed by a doctor and were "very fit physically and mentally". Completing the mission could take up to 3 or 4 days, depending on the weather, rescue operators told Reuters. General Kongcheep Tantrawanit said, referring to the area where rescue workers had set up a base. "I promise to take the very best care of the kids", Ekkapol said in a note given to a diver on Friday, and published on the Thai Navy SEAL Facebook page on Saturday.
British Cave Rescue Council Chairman Peter Dennis told Sunrise this morning that the decision to delay the next dive was due to the strenuous work the divers are undergoing. The path out is considered especially complicated because of twists and turns in narrow flooded passages.
"If we wait and rain water comes in, our readiness will be lower than now", said Narongsak Osottanakorn, governor of Chiang Rai province.
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Reporters were asked to leave the site earlier today and convene at a newly-established media centre several kilometres away in order to give rescuers space to work.
The boys, ages 11-16, and their 25-year-old coach have been trapped in the complex cave system since June 23 by flooded passageways.
Monsoon flooding had initially cut off their escape, and rescuers were unable to find them for more than a week.
The rescue has received global support.
"There is no other day that we are more ready than today", he said. "Finding the boys doesn't mean we've finished our mission". It is only a small battle we've won, but the war has not ended.