All 13 are safe, the governor confirmed, speaking after a mammoth search operation in the Tham Luang caves in Chiang Rai.
Rescuers had hoped they would find safety from flooding on a mound in an underground chamber.
The group’s plight gripped the country and led to an outpouring of support. The governor of the region said that all of the 13 missing were safe after a mammoth search and rescue operation.
Rising water and mud had impeded the search by divers. The boys aged 11 to 16 and their coach went to explore the Tham Luang caves on 23 June.
Thai Navy seals have found all 13 with signs of life, Governor Osottanakorn told reporters, speaking about the divers that had spearheaded the search.
- The 12 boys are members of the Moo Pa – or Wild Boar – football team.
- Their 25-year-old assistant coach, Ekkapol Janthawong, is known to have occasionally brought them out on day trips – including a trip to the same cave two years ago.
- The youngest member, Chanin “Titan” Wibrunrungrueang, is 11 – he started playing football aged seven.
- Duangpet “Dom” Promtep, 13, is the team captain and said to be the motivator of the group.
- The club’s head coach Nopparat Kantawong who did not join the group on their excursion, says he believes the boys, who dream of becoming professional football players in the future, will stick together.
- “I believe they won’t abandon each other,” he told media outlets. “They will take care of each other.”
He said the boys were found at a spot near Pattaya Beach, quoting a report from the SEAL rescue team. He said their evacuation will be made after a medical check-up.