Here's how the Thailand cave rescue might work

Agonising rescue ahead for Thai cave boys as nation rejoices

The world watches with bated breath while the 12 starved boys and their football coach, who have been stranded for nearly two weeks now, are reportedly being trained in how to breathe with scuba equipment as they prepare for a possible attempt at leaving the cave this morning. Among them are Thai Navy SEAL divers, three British cave divers and a team of American pararescue and survival specialists from the U.S. Pacific Command.

In a heartening message to families waiting in anguish outside, the Thai Navy SEAL footage features 11 of the 12-strong team, each makes a traditional Thai greeting gesture to the camera before introducing themselves by nickname and saying "I'm in good health". The insignia of the SEALs has been etched onto a rock face in the cave, video from the group's Facebook page shows.

Rescuers have said they will not risk the boys' safety in an attempted rescue.

Soldiers are seen near the Tham Luang cave complex, where members of an under-16 football team and their coach are trapped, in the northern province of Chiang Rai, Thailand, on Wednesday.

After almost 10 days of searching, two British divers found the boys and were able to send back video footage of them huddled together on a dry ledge, above the water line and still in their soccer kit.

"The water is still too rough for the boys now", said Tiraya Jaikaew, who leads a team of volunteer rescue divers helping the Thai navy.

But as the young boys reportedly can't swim, the mission to save them is made all the more complex. In the most recent videos a navy SEAL is shown treating minor cuts on the feet and legs of the boys with antibiotic ointment.

On July 2, the Thai Navy SEALS, and two British cave diving experts found them alive, deep inside a partially flooded part of the cave.

"It's like he has been given a new life", Kian Kamluang, whose 16-year-old son Pornchai is inside the cave, told the Associated Press. She said she'll never let her son go into a cave or near water again. It also raised hope among family members, some of whom have stayed at the chaotic, muddy site where rescue operations are being coordinated since the boys went missing.

He returned Wednesday to offer prayers for their safe rescue, and as measure of the respect in which he was held, was allowed access to the cave, which is generally off-limits to outsiders. The current flooding situation means the boys would have to dive, which rescue experts have said could be extremely risky.

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"We are racing against time before we found them", Chiang Rai Governor Narongsak Osotthanakorn said early Thursday.

From the cave entrance, ABC's Anne Barker said the diving route was not without risk.

"We have the luxury of time", Courtley said, noting that the group is now in a "stable and non-life threatening" situation in the cave.

Chiang Rai Gov. Narongsak Osotthanakorn has repeatedly insisted that the boys safety's must be 100 percent guaranteed before any extraction can begin.

"These are 13-year-old kids, they don't understand their own mortality, they think they're invincible", Black said.

The governor also said the level of the water in the cave had decreased substantially, by about 1cm per hour or 180,000 litres per hour, and that 130 million litres had been expelled from the cave so far.

"They have to train [in underwater diving] for a couple of days, but if you ask if they can dive today, I think they cannot".

"Now we are teaching the children to swim and dive", he said, adding that if water levels subside, the Wild Boar soccer team would be taken out easily.

"My biggest fear is that they would decide, 'OK, we're going to leave them in there until the rainy season is over in a place where there are hunkered down, '" Dally said.

"Nobody will teach anyone a full cave course, but trying to get them comfortable with masks, with the breathing, (is) completely different", he said.

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