UPDATING: ALL 12 BOYS AND THEIR COACH EXTRACTED FROM THAI CAVE

All 12 boys and their coach have been rescued from a Thai cave more than two weeks after they went missing.

 

It’s believed the coach was the last of the group to leave, emerging from the cave at around 18.19 local time.

 

An Australian doctor and two rescue divers are still inside.

 

 

The first eight boys of a 13-member Thai youth football team rescued from a cave in northern Thailand are in good mental and physical health and are asking for chocolate, officials said Tuesday, although two were on antibiotics after being tested for pneumonia.

 

“Everyone is in a good mental state,” said Jesada Chokedamrongsuk, permanent secretary of the public health ministry at Chiang Rai hospital.

 

“None of the eight boys has fever today,” he said.

 

The boys, aged 12-16, were the first to be extracted on Sunday and Monday, while the remaining four and their coach spent a 17th night inside the cave.

 

General of the Public Health Ministry, Thongchai Lertwilairattanapong (L), Dr. Jesada Chokedamrongsuk (C) and director of Chiang Rai Hospital, Dr. Chaiwet Thanapaisan (R), attend a press conference at Chiang Rai Prachanukroh Hospital in Chiang Rai, July 10, 2018. /VCG Photo

 

Experts had warned of possible long-lasting damage from the ordeal, either through psychological trauma or infections caught in the cave.

 

Jesada said the group had been given x-rays and blood tests, adding that two presented suspected symptoms of pneumonia but were given antibiotics and were “in a normal state.”

 

He said the group can eat, move about, and talk. “They (all the boys) will have to stay in the hospital for one week to wait for their results and to see if anything changes,” he said.

 

Thongchai Lertwilairattanapong, Inspector General of the Public Health Ministry, said the first four boys taken out on Sunday were eating normal and plain food. “They’re asking for chocolate. We can see that everything is ok as they’re eating well,” he said.

 

A stretcher which is believed to be carrying a boy rescued from the Tham Luang cave is moved from an ambulance in the northern province of Chiang Rai, July 9, 2018. /VCG Photo

 

The boys remain in quarantine but some of their parents have been able to see their children through the glass.

 

Meanwhile, rescuers are racing to extract the rest four boys and their coach as heavy rains pick back up in Chiang Rai Province. The rains added urgency to the final stages of the treacherous rescue bid, several kilometers inside a mountain and through flooded, tight corridors.

 

It’s reported that the remaining five will be brought out at the same time today.

 

The ups and downs of the rescue bid has entranced Thailand and also fixated a global audience, drawing comments of support from celebrities as varied as US President Donald Trump, football star Lionel Messi and tech guru Elon Musk.

 

Source:AFP, Xinhua