Dramatic footage released of emaciated Thai kids in cave

Dramatic footage released of emaciated Thai kids in  cave
PHOTO: Facebook/Royal Thai Navy via AFP

MAE SAI, Thailand - Dramatic footage was released early Tuesday of an emaciated and bedraggled Thai youth football team crammed onto a wedge of dry ground surrounded by water deep inside a cave that has held them captive for nine days.

The group, mostly seated and with baggy football shirts pulled over their knees and illuminated by torchlight, asked for food and to leave the cave immediately, according to the video taken late Monday and shared on the official Facebook page of the Thai Navy SEALS.

In the video an unidentified diver, speaking with a British accent, urges the group to stay calm and says "many, many people are coming... we are the first".

on Facebook

Hooyah.....ทีมหมูป่า พบเยาวชนทีมหมูป่าบริเวณหาดทรายห่างจาก Pattaya beach 200 เมตร ...

Posted by Thai NavySEAL on Monday, 2 July 2018

The group appeared exhausted, rake thin, sensitive to the light but lucid, with some speaking faltering English to try to communicate with the unidentified diver.

A voice confirms there all 13 people who went missing last Saturday are on the slope of land.

One child asks "what day?" and another says "we are hungry.. shall we go outside?" The diver replies "I know, I understand... no, not today.

"You have been here for 10 days, you are very strong." A rake thin child in the foreground appears to bow in gratitude and says "thank you" as his voice falters.

All 13 members of Thai junior football team found in flooded cave

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    Parents of the boys trapped in the Chiang Rai cave shed tears of joy and relief on Wednesday morning as they watched a video of them being treated for minor injuries.

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    The Royal Thai Navy SEALS shot the video and posted it on their “ThaiSEAL” Facebook page, showing the 12 boys noticeably thinner and looking exhausted.

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    But the boys swaddled in silvery blankets proclaim themselves in good health in the clip.

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    Their parents watched the video while they were waiting to talk to the boys via a specially rigged phone system.

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    They reaffirmed their love for the children and said they were forgiven for going astray, since none of them could have expected the June 23 cave excursion would turn into a nail-biting 10-day drama, with no clear end yet in sight.

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    Attention has now turned to how to get the group back out through several kilometers of dangerously flooded tunnels.

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    The navy has raised the possibility that the 13 could be in the Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai province until the flood waters recede, at the end of the rainy season in four months.

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    But others say the boys could be out in a matter of days if the weather is on their side and water can be pumped out of the cave complex, and if they can be taught to use scuba gear.

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    Kobchai Boonarana, deputy director-general of the Disaster Prevention and Mitigation department, said it was up to the rescue team in the cave to decide whether and when the boys would be strong enough to tackle the journey out.

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    “We miss them and want to see them get out very soon,” one parent said as the video played. “They look thinner, but we’re happy they’re safe.”

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    Rescuers found all 12 boys and their football coach alive inside the flooded Tham Luang Cave Monday night.

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    The 13 victims from a local football club, Mu Pa Academy Mae Sai, have been stranded inside the cave in Chiang Rai province because of flash floods since June 23.

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    The group, mostly seated and with baggy football shirts pulled over their knees and illuminated by torchlight, asked for food and to leave the cave immediately, according to the video taken late Monday and shared on the official Facebook page of the Thai Navy SEALS.

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    The group appeared exhausted, rake thin, sensitive to the light but lucid, with some speaking faltering English to try to communicate with the unidentified diver.

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    Family members celebrate while camping out near Than Luang cave following news all members of children's football team and their coach were alive in the cave at Khun Nam Nang Non Forest Park in the Mae Sai district of Chiang Rai province late July 2, 2018.

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    The Chiang Rai governor praised and gave credits to two British cave diving experts who found the missing team. He did not mention the names but it is understood to be John Volanthen and Richard Stanton (pic, in blue).

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    Three British cave-divers, Richard William Stanton (L), John Volanthen (2nd-L) and Robert Charles Harper (3rd-L) arrive at Khun Nam Nang Non Forest Park near the Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai on June 27, 2018

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    12 boys, aged between 11 and 16, and their 25-year old assistant football coach went missing on Saturday after they decided to explore the Tham Luang cave complex in Chiang Rai province,

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    despite a sign warning visitors that the maze of passages and chambers was prone to flooding.

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    Bicycles and football shoes belonging to the boys were found near the entrance, and rescue workers think handprints inside the cave could have been left by the group.

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    But the search has so far yielded no other trace.

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    The race to find the boys has gripped the Southeast Asian nation

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    International rescue teams, including one sent by the United States Pacific Command (PACOM),

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    are assisting the Thai army, navy and police in a search operation that has been hampered by heavy rain.

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    Plans to drill into the mountainside overnight to drain water from inside the vast cave complex have been partially successful.

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    The 10-kilometre cave is one of Thailand's longest. Visitors are usually only allowed up to 800 meters inside the cave, which has a reputation for being difficult to navigate.

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    Exhausted family members have been keeping vigil near the cave as they await news about their loved ones.

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    Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha visited the site, offering encouragement to rescuers and comfort to relatives.

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    "Whatever can be done, do it, the government will back it," said Prayuth.

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    "They're athletes. They're strong," he told the boys' relatives in an attempt to comfort them.

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FIRST CONVERSATION

Following is the transcript of the conversation as released on the Facebook page:

Diver: Raise your hands.

Boy: Thank you [crying].

Diver: How many of you?

Boy: Thirteen.

Diver: Thirteen?

Boy: Yeah, yeah.

Diver: Brilliant.

Boy: [Voice difficult to be heard]

Diver: No, not today. Just two of us. We have to dive.

We are coming. It’s OK. Many people are coming. Many, many people. We are the first. Many people come.

Boy: What day?

Diver 1: Tomorrow.

Diver 2: No, no, no, what day is it?

Diver: Monday. OK, but one week ... uh, Monday. You have been here for 10 days. You are very strong.

Boy: [Speaking in Thai]: Who know English, translate for us.

Boy 2: [Speaking in Thai]: Can’t catch up with the words.

Diver: We’ll come.

Boy: We are hungry.

Diver: I know, I know. I understand. We’ll come.

Boy 1: [In Thai]: They will take our photos first.

Boy 2: [In Thai]: Tell them we are hungry.

Boy1: I’ve told them. They know.

Boy: What day you come to help me?

Diver: We come here, we have been diving here for what ... Tomorrow, we’ll help tomorrow. The Navy, Navy SEAL tomorrow. With the food, the doctor and ...

Today, a light? You have a light. We’ll give you more light.

[Sound of somebody falling into water]

Boy: Come up. Brother, rush up.

Diver: That looks fun.

Boy: I am very happy.

Diver: We are happy too.

Boy: Thank you so much.

Diver: OK

Boy: Where you come from?

Diver: England, UK.

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