#SaveRayan: Rescuers try to save five-year-old boy trapped in Moroccan well

#SaveRayan: Rescuers try to save five-year-old boy trapped in Moroccan well
Five-year-old Rayan has been stuck down a narrow, 60-metre-deep well for almost two days as volunteers from around the country desperately try to help him.
2 min read
03 February, 2022
Rayan Awram has been trapped in the well since Tuesday afternoon [Getty-file photo]

Millions of Moroccans are on tenterhooks as attempts to rescue a five-year-old boy who fell down a narrow, 60-metre-deep well two days ago continue.

Rayan Awram fell down the well on Tuesday afternoon while playing near his family's home in the small village of Ighran near the city of Chefchaouen, locals told The New Arab.

After calls for help, authorities arrived at the village and launched a rescue operation at 5 pm local time. However, rescuers have not yet been able to pull Rayan to safety because the well is too narrow.

By letting a camera phone attached to a cord down the well, rescuers saw on Wednesday evening that Rayan was still alive, more than 24 hours into his ordeal.

Civil protection authorities began digging around the well using bulldozers, hoping to reach Rayan faster - but some locals fear using bulldozers might hurt him.

“I dan't understand why they are using such old and undeveloped means to save a child," said Ahmed, a 20-year-old who travelled from Chefchaouen city hoping to assist rescue efforts.

"You can't save a child using a bulldozer - they may hurt him,” he said.

Rayan's fate has become of national worry. Online, videos and pictures of the rescue operation, shared using the hashtag #SaveRayan in Arabic, went viral. Like Ahmed, young people flocked to the scene from distant towns and villages to help save the boy.

Some young people volunteered to go inside the well and bring Rayan out. The rescue team sent a young volunteer down the well on Wednesday; he tried twice to save Rayan, but could not beat the well's narrowness and lack of oxygen.

The people around the well have reacted with tears, prayers, and desperation as Rayan’s father, Khalid Awram, clings to the hope that he will be able to hug his son by the end of the day.

“Everyone is doing their best to get him out alive. But his mother and I are so upset and worried”, Awram told The New Arab.