First two Thai youth soccer players rescued from cave

First two Thai youth soccer players rescued from cave

The rescue operation started at 10 am local time and 6 of the 13 stuck people have been rescued so far. Musk's small submarines will reportedly be light enough for two divers to carry.

One of two ambulances leave the cave in northern Thailand hours after operation began to extract the trapped youth soccer players and their coach, in Mae Sai, Chiang Rai province, in northern Thailand, on Sunday.

The boys and their coach had been stranded in Tham Luang Nang Non when they went exploring in the cave after a scrimmage June 23.

The rescue mission began after rain showers soaked the Tham Luang Cave area in northern Chiang Rai province for the past 24 hours, heightening the risks in what the governor has called a "war with water and time" to save the team.

"We're ready for the operation today", said Narongsak, who said the weather and the water levels in the cave are good.

Mirza is the national coordinator of the National Cave Rescue Mission.

'Today is the best day for them to come out, ' he said.

US President Donald Trump said on Twitter Sunday that his government is working "very closely" with Thai officials.

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Officials said the first two boys had been extracted at 5:40 p.m. local time and traveled 0.6 miles (1 kilometer) underwater. "Divers will work with doctors in the cave to examine each the kids' health to determine who should get to come out first", Narongsak said Sunday morning. Several ambulances were seen coming to and from the cavesite.

The area outside the Chiang Rai hospital was cordoned off by police. The other boys have not been identified yet. Upon rescue, the boys will receive an initial medical assessment at a makeshift triage site before being airlifted to Chiang Rai Prachanukroh hospital, which is about 70 km away from the cave.

The Thai government released a graphic showing how the rescue from the Tham Luang cave would occur. They wore full-faced masks and hung on to divers' bodies on their way out, Narongsak said.

However another operation commander said the operation would take two to three days to complete, with the boys and their coach being brought out one-by-one, and that the weather conditions would play a role in determining how long it would take.

The rescue operation will now pause for at least 10 hours, according to Narongsak Osatanakorn, chief of the command centers coordinating the rescue, so that divers can replenish their oxygen tanks.

Of the 13-strong foreign dive team - mainly from Europe - three will escort the children, while the remainder are positioned along the risky first kilometer stretch, where the boys will have to navigate through submerged passageways in some places no more than two feet (0.6 meter) wide.

On Saturday, Thai Navy SEALS published touching notes scrawled by the trapped footballers to their families, who had been waiting for them agonisingly close by outside the cave entrance. Levels have fallen from 15 percent to 20 due to the presence of rescue workers in the cave, reports said. Oxygen tanks along the almost 2-mile stretch will be replaced.

Mr Ekapol helped Mr Nopparat devise a system where the boys' passion for football would motivate them to excel academically.

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