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Final Rescue Mission For Trapped Thai Boys' Football Team Is Underway

11 July 2018

Billionaire tech entrepreneur Elon Musk applauded the rescue of a Thai boys soccer team and their coach after they were saved from a flooded cave in northern Thailand. British divers found the 13, huddled on a muddy bank in a partly flooded chamber several kilometers inside the complex, on Monday last week.

Onlookers in front of Chiangrai Prachanukroh Hospital watch and cheer as ambulances transport the last rescued schoolboys and their coach to the hospital from a helipad nearby, on July 10, 2018, in Chiang Rai, Thailand.

On June 23, the Wild Boar soccer team ventured into Tham Luang cave, one of Thailand's longest and toughest to explore, during heavy rains after soccer practice.The cave system is located about 825 kilometres north of Bangkok. After they were found on July 2, officials cautioned it could take some time to get them out, but authorities chose to act with heavy rains forecast to hit the region.

Some of the world's best cave divers have gathered at the cave in recent weeks for the mission.

Rescuers need to hold the boys' oxygen tanks in front of them and swim pencil-like through submerged holes.

Trained divers from the U.S., the U.K., Canada and elsewhere flew to Thailand to offer their expertise and help escort the team out through the flooded cave passages.

Rescue chief Narongsak Osottanakorn answers questions from the press after resuming the rescue of trapped children and their coach.

Four were rescued Sunday and another four were rescued on Monday. They were not allowed to visit the hospital where the boys were taken.

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Just hours after it was posted, the image had been shared more than 87,000 times and received more than 43,000 comments as people praised the military men.

A member of Thai rescue team walks inside a cave where the boys and their coach were trapped.

Yesterday, rescue planners brought all five remaining members of the stranded survivors out in less than nine hours. The machine could be "good for rescuing vulnerable patients in unsafe environments, particularly if water, toxic gas or risky bacteria/viruses are present", Musk tweeted today (July 10).

The Latest: The official who led the Thai cave rescue says the medic and three Thai navy SEAL divers who stayed with the trapped boys after they were found have left the flooded cave.

But against all odds, the rescue team was successful in extracting the group.

According to a document released by the Thai authorities, the plan was that two divers would accompany each of the boys, who were being brought out in groups.

"If you take a step back and you look at it ... it's not about boundaries, it's not about race or religion", Oupra said.

All evacuees were blindfolded as they were moved from Tham Luang to the hospital, to protect eyes that had not seen sunlight for two weeks.

Final Rescue Mission For Trapped Thai Boys' Football Team Is Underway