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

Eight boys rescued from cave in northern Thailand

The first footage has emerged from the hospital where 12 Thai boys and their coach are being treated after their dramatic rescue from a flooded cave.

The youngsters and their coach had been stuck in the cave since 23 June, after rising water levels trapped within the Tham Luang Nang Non cave complex in Chiang Rai.

The incredible rescue has been deemed a miracle by many, but the operation wasn't without tragedy.

Officials were not immediately available to comment on who had been brought out, and it was not clear what condition they were in.

Pictures from Tuesday: The unprecedented mission to evacuate the "Wild Boar" football team and their coach from a flooded Thai cave entered its end game on Tuesday as rescuers said they will guide the remaining four boys and their coach to freedom.

Narongsak Osatanakorn, the official overseeing the rescue operation, said the boys should not be blamed for the near tragedy.

The 12 boys and their coach who were saved from a cave in northern Thailand are doing well mentally and physically, a Thai health official has said, amid an outpouring of gratitude for those involved in their rescue.

Eight boys have so far been rescued from the cave, four on Sunday and another four on Monday.

There are concerns they may have consumed contaminated water, while bird or bat droppings could cause infections.

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Rescue mission chief Narongsak Osottanakorn said: 'We don't see the children as at fault or as heroes. In addition, Scott's wife grew up with Sgt. Saman Kunan, a Thai rescuer who died July 6 when he ran out of air in the cave system, Variety reports.

Some family members have been allowed to visit the boys in hospital, but are only allowed to observe them from behind a glass window.

The first people to find the 12 boys and their coach were British divers John Volanthen and Richard Stanton.

"They're asking for chocolate".

Two of them possibly have a lung infection but all eight are generally "healthy and smiling", he said.

Monday's rescue effort took about nine hours, two fewer than the day before, in a sign of growing confidence and expertise.

The perilous mission saw the boys having to use scuba masks as they were led through the narrow tunnels to safety.

Technology billionaire Elon Musk went into the cave on Monday and left the rescue team with a "kid-sized" submarine his company SpaceX had built, Thailand's interior Minister Anupong Paochinda said. Mini-sub is ready if needed.

Dr Harris was supposed to be on holiday at the time of the rescue, but cancelled it to come to the aid of the Wild Boars football team.

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