Divers embark on mission to rescue final 5 trapped in Thai cave

John Volanthen

United States President Donald Trump wrote Sunday on Twitter: "The U.S.is working very closely with the Government of Thailand to help get all of the children out of the cave and to safety". Divers tried to train them with basic diving skills as a part of mission to extract them from the flooded cave after they were found on July 2.

The rescue began yesterday with the first four boys brought out.

The death on Friday of a former Thai navy Seal underlined the risks.

Officials heading the rescue operation had said they were preparing a third rescue mission.

The dramatic and unsafe rescue at the Tham Luang cave in the northern province of Chiang Rai was launched on Sunday and four boys were brought out that day. Four boys were retrieved one at a time through the cave by two divers.

Four boys and their football coach are waiting to make the long and arduous journey out of the cave complex.

Officials have generally waited hours to confirm rescues.

Officials said the boys freed Sunday were hungry but in good health, and had asked for holy basil stir-fried rice, a popular Thai dish.

Although the rescued eight were all presumed to be the boys, aged between 11 and 16, authorities did not reveal their identities nor confirm whether the coach remained inside the cave.

The final push is on to rescue the four remaining boys and their football coach trapped in a Thai cave.

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Two of the boys are thought to have lung infections, but there are no serious complaints to report.

"The kids are footballers so they have high immune systems", Jesada said.

Family members have seen at least some of the boys from behind a glass isolation barrier, and Jedsada said doctors may let the boys walk around their beds Tuesday. "Their plan is designed for rescuing four". But they also warned heavy rain could hamper their efforts.

He confirmed that a medic and all navy SEAL divers involved in the rescue mission had also left the cave safely.

A second mission, which rescued another four boys, commenced on Monday, July 9.

The tech entrepreneur tweeted Tuesday morning he'd "Just returned from Cave 3" referring to the rescuers' command centre inside the extensive cave network.

Musk on Tuesday visited the cave and posted pictures and videos online.

The submarine was constructed in about eight hours and was tested in a Los Angeles pool with a person inside, including maneuvering through obstacles that replicate the cave's narrowest passages.

Divers are forced out of the cave by rushing floodwaters as they try to reach an air pocket called "Pattaya Beach", where the boys are believed to have retreated.

Keeping all the boys calm in a disciplined environment in a pitch-black cavern all that time was likely the result of the coach's training: as a Buddhist monk.

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