Prayuth gave a televised national address Wednesday, saying the government's efforts, the assistance of people in Thailand and overseas, and the outpouring of moral support made the mission a success.
"We didn't expect to be getting 13 people out of there alive", he said.
Harris is an experienced diver and an underwater photographer, and has undertaken cave-diving expeditions in Australia, New Zealand, Christmas Island and China. He has an active interest in diving safety and accident investigation'.
The boys and their families have thanked the divers who saved them.
Rescue efforts were failing, and hope was fading, but due to the bravery of first responders including Thailand's navy SEALs and good fortune from a lack of inclement weather, the boys were eventually rescued according to The Guardian.
"He's got a very bouncy Australian accent and they (the boys) seemed to find that quite relaxing and reassuring".
There were calls for Dr Harris to be handed the Australian of the Year award yesterday, after the mission, which saw the 53-year-old dive many times through the 4km of cold, dark and narrow passages to reach the boys and assess them medically in order to facilitate the risky escape.
Dr Richard Harris and Craig Challen with hospital staff in Thailand.
An American diver involved in the rescue that the "kids were proper knocked out".
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Members of the Thai Navy SEALs team arrived home to their base at Sattahip, feted by the Thai people but saddened by the loss of their colleague.
Mr Pearce gave no cause of death or the age of Dr Harris' father, Jim.
The Australian Federal Australian police said the scale and risk of the operation was "unprecedented" as rescuers moved approximately 20 tonnes of equipment including oxygen tanks, pumps and food through the cave system.
The search for the boys and the daring operation to rescue them caught the attention of wide audiences across the globe and the drama has now inadvertently come to focus on the plight of almost half a million people in Thailand who are stateless.
"He will be coming home soon and taking some well-earned time off to be with his family".
Immediately after his death became public knowledge, people around the world began mourning the fearless Navy SEAL member - but no tribute was more touching than the one his wife left him on social media.
'Harry is selfless, he is extremely thoughtful.
One wrote on Twitter: 'If ever a bloke deserved to be Australian of the Year it's this man, he's what embodies the true spirit of this country'.
Dr Harris and Mr Challen touched down with twenty Australians involved in the risky Tham Luang cave rescue.