An official Moroccan statement has confirmed that the five-year-old boy Rayan who fell into a deep well in Morocco on Tuesday has passed away.
The news came shortly after Rayan was taken out of the well by emergency teams who had been working for nearly four days to reach the boy who plunged 32m through the well’s narrow opening.
The operation took so long because fears of a landslide made the operation more dangerous. This combined with the mixture of rocky and sandy soils meant rescuers deemed opening the water well’s narrow shaft to be too dangerous.
Instead, bulldozers were used to cut a huge trench next to the well. Rescuers then started digging horizontally to reach the boy.
Rescue operations in the small northern town of Tamorot, around 100km from the city of Chefchaouen, had been ongoing since Tuesday evening.
Footage on Thursday from a camera lowered into the well showed that the boy was alive and conscious, although he appeared to be suffering from some minor head injuries.
Rescue workers lowered an oxygen mask, food and water into the well and a medical team was also on site. A helicopter arrived at the scene to take him to hospital once he had been freed from the well.
A large crowd gathered to pray for him and to help rescue teams over the past few days.
On social media, the #SaveRayan hashtag been trending for the past few days with people worldwide praying for the five year old.
More to follow…