After a five-day rescue operation, 5-year-old Rayan Awram who fell into a 32-metre deep well in Chefchaouen, has passed away after officials pulled him out of the chasm.
The Moroccan royal palace says a 5-year-old boy who was trapped in a deep well for five days has died.
"Following the tragic accident which cost the life of the child Rayan Oram, His Majesty King Mohammed VI called the parents of the boy who died after falling down the well," a royal court statement said.
The boy, Rayan Awram, was pulled out dead at the bottom of a well on late Saturday night by rescuers after a tragic end to a painstaking lengthy operation that captivated global attention.
His parents had been escorted to an ambulance before the boy, Rayan, emerged. His ordeal has captured worldwide attention.
An Associated Press reporter at the scene saw the boy wrapped in a yellow blanket after he emerged from a tunnel dug specifically for the rescue.
His plight had captured worldwide attention.
Online messages of support and concern for the boy poured in from around the world as the rescue efforts dragged through the night.
Rescuers used a rope to send oxygen and water down to the boy as well as a camera to monitor him. By Saturday morning, the head of the rescue committee, Abdelhadi Temrani, said: “It is not possible to determine the child’s condition at all at this time. But we hope to God that the child is alive.”
Rayan fell into a 32-metre (105-feet) well located outside his home in the village of Ighran in Morocco’s mountainous northern Chefchaouen province on Tuesday evening.
READ MORE: Morocco holds its breath as rescuers inch closer to boy trapped in well
Finally! The moment we all have been waiting. The Moroccan rescue team has successfully rescued little #Rayan from the well where he has been stuck for the past five days.— Abdul Wasey Naik (@WaseyNaik) February 5, 2022
Alhamdulillah, now we can all sleep in peace. 🙏🏽#SaveRayan#أنقذوا_ريان #قلوبنا_مع_ريان pic.twitter.com/LoqLOV9dLD
For three days, search crews used bulldozers to dig a parallel ditch. Then on Friday, they started excavating a horizontal tunnel to reach the trapped boy. Morocco’s MAP news agency said that experts in topographical engineering were called upon for help.
Temrani, speaking to local television 2M, said on Saturday that rescuers had just two metres left to dig to reach the hole where the boy is trapped.
“The diggers encountered a hard rock on their way, and were therefore very careful to avoid any landslides or cracks,” he said.
“It took about five hours to get rid of the rock because the digging was slow and was done in a careful way to avoid creating cracks in the hole from below, which could threaten the life of the child as well as the rescue workers.”
The work has been especially difficult because of fears that the soil surrounding the well could collapse on the boy.
His distraught parents were joined by hundreds of villagers and others who had gathered to watch the rescue operation.
He was taken on a stretcher and put in the ambulance which drove directly to the hospital. Once again, Rayan has been saved! Alhamdu lillah!#SaveRayan pic.twitter.com/M4TpwxFFNf— Hasnida Hanim Ahmad Kamil TV3 (@hanimNewsMPB) February 5, 2022
The village of about 500 people is dotted with deep wells, many used for irrigating the cannabis crop that is the main source of income for many in the poor, remote and arid region of Morocco's Rif Mountains.
Most of the wells have protective covers.
The exact circumstances of how the boy fell in the well are unclear.
Nationwide, Moroccans had taken to social media to offer their hopes for the boy’s survival, using the hashtag #SaveRayan which has brought global attention to the rescue efforts.