Thai cave operation: Pumps failed after last boy rescued

Some of the trapped boys are stateless reports say

Thai officials have been generous with their praise of foreign volunteers who were essential in the complicated search and rescue operation, including Mr Volanthen and Mr Stanton who were the first to discover the boys.

But Mr Volanthen credited the worldwide team of military, navy and civilian divers who all "pulled together".

Dr. Harris was part of a comprehensive team that ensured the 12 exhausted schoolboys-ranging in age from 11 to 16-along with their soccer coach, survived the grueling two-and-a-half mile journey out the cave.

The film company says they are now in talks with "senior officials in Thailand both on provincial and national levels".

"The situation went beyond just being a rescue mission and became a symbol of unity among mankind", he said Wednesday night. Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha reportedly said Tuesday that safeguards would have to be put in place at the scene to protect future tourists.

There were several options as to how to save the boys, including keeping them in the cave until the monsoon season was over.

Plans to turn the rescue operation into a movie are also in the works, with two production companies racing to turn the extraordinary story into a film.

"There was a lot of chaos", one of the divers said.

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Jon M Chu will develop a second Thai cave rescue film to combat whitewashing.

Derek Anderson, a 32-year-old rescue specialist with the US Air Force based in Okinawa, Japan, said the dozen boys and their coach were "incredibly resilient". He last partnered with Ivanhoe in directing the upcoming romantic comedy Crazy Rich Asians.

"We couldn't see them initially - they had to come round the corner".

Many are from nomadic hill tribes and other ethnic groups who have for centuries lived around Mae Sai, the heart of "Golden Triangle" - a lawless wedge of land bisecting Thailand, Myanmar, Laos and China.

"So anyone thinking about the story better approach it right & respectfully", he added.

Their plight and the massive, risky three-day-long operation to free them gripped the world's attention.

A former Thai navy diver helping to rescue a football team trapped inside a flooded cave died July 6 as officials warned the window of opportunity to free the youngsters is "limited".

Dr Harris specifically noted the efforts of the four British divers who led the search for the soccer team and laid the rope which would eventually be used to bring the 13 out of the cave.

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