President Trump: US ‘working very closely’ with Thailand to rescue children

(CNN) — President Donald Trump tweeted Sunday morning that the US is working with the Thai government to rescue children trapped in a flooded cave.

“The U.S. is working very closely with the Government of Thailand to help get all of the children out of the cave and to safety. Very brave and talented people!” Trump tweeted.

As Trump tweeted, images and reports were coming in of the rescue operation underway, including the news that some boys had been evacuated successfully from the cave in northern Thailand.

The 12 boys, all members of a soccer team, and their coach went missing last month. They were found in a cave several days ago where they have been trapped for more than two weeks.

The rescue operation Sunday comes amid mounting international concern about the safety of the group stuck deep in the flooded cave. A former Thai navy SEAL died on Friday in the cave in the effort to bring the group back safely.

A US military official said there were 36 US Pacific Command military personnel involved in the rescue operation, mostly from Kadena Air Base in Japan. The group included 12 search-and-rescue divers, who were not expected to participate directly in the rescue dives, and civilian and military personnel from the US embassy also are involved. US officials helped to brief Thai officials on Friday about the proposed operation.

In addition to the US support for Thailand, CNN previously reported the effort includes experts and volunteer divers from Europe, Asia and Australia.