Well accident in Morocco: family carries Rayan († 5) to the grave


One last time the eyes of the world are on little Rayan (†5)…

The parents of the boy, who fell into a 32 meter deep well while playing and died after a fruitless rescue operation, buried their son on Monday. After midday prayer, his coffin wrapped in green cloth was lowered into the family grave. Now Rayan rests just six kilometers from the village where he grew up.

Rayan’s fate touched the whole world: The boy from northern Morocco fell into a 32 meter deep well shaft while playing on Tuesday. For five days, emergency services removed the earth and cleared away boulders weighing several tons. They dug with their bare hands – everything to save the life of the child.



Rayan fell into a 32 meter deep well while playingPhoto: Private Private


Mourners place green branches on Rayan's grave.  Green is the color of Islam

Mourners place green branches on Rayan’s grave. Green is the color of IslamPhoto: Mosa’ab Elshamy/dpa

The rescue workers supplied the five-year-old with oxygen and water via a cable winch. It was unclear whether he could drink. They checked his state of health via a camera. Rayan’s parents, Khaled Aourram and Ouassima Kharchich, kept watch at the top of the well. They encouraged their son and sang songs to him.

Thousands of people came to the place Bab Berred (5000 inhabitants). The Moroccans prayed for the child and applauded the helpers, who inch their way towards Rayan.


Mourning women gather outside Rayan's childhood home in Ighrane

Mourning women gather outside Rayan’s childhood home in IghranePhoto: FADEL SENNA/AFP


For five days, rescuers tried to dig little Rayan free with excavators, shovels and finally by hand

For five days, rescuers tried to dig little Rayan free with excavators, shovels and finally by handPhoto: STR/AFP

After 100 hours of hope, Rayan was rescued lifeless from the well on Saturday. His body was flown by helicopter to a military hospital in the capital, Rabat. Doctors tried to revive him for an hour. Vain.

Moroccan King Mohammed VI. (58) called the exhausted father at 9:15 p.m. at the well shaft: “God’s will is unstoppable,” he tried to comfort Khaled.

French President Emmanuel Macron also took part in the drama surrounding Rayan: “Tonight I would like to tell little Rayan’s family and the Moroccan people that we share their grief,” he wrote on Facebook.

Pope Francis expressed his condolences to the Moroccans over the weekend. After the weekly Angelus prayer, he said to the faithful in St. Peter’s Square: “An entire country tried to save Rayan. They tried everything.”

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