“Don’t lose hope” – Chilean mine survivor

One of the 33 Chilean miners rescued after 70 days underground in 2010 has urged the trapped  young Thai footballers to hold firm in the belief that they will survive their ordeal, according to The Telegraph.

“Do not lose faith or hope,” Juan Carlos Aguilar, one of the supervisors in the group that was buried alive by the collapse in the San José mine, was quoted as saying.

Mr Aguilar said it was a “miracle” that the youth football team had been found unharmed.

With the 12 boys and their coach potentially facing months underground before they can be rescued, the veteran miner said that keeping each other in good spirits and united was of the greatest importance.

Like the young footballers, the 33 miners spent a long period – in their case 17 days – cut off from the outside world before making contact with rescuers.

Mr Aguilar said that now the team had been found, they could be given sufficient water and food to keep them physically nourished, but added that they also needed psychological support, the paper reported.

He said the isolation and trauma of their experience that posed the main danger.