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Middle East

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah sends aircraft to take 96-stone man to hospital

Ultra-obese 20-year-old weighs the same as two baby elephants

The king of Saudi Arabia has ordered a 96 stone man to be airlifted to hospital for treatment.

The plan to remove Khalid Mohsin Shaeri from his home in the southern city of Jazan took six months of planning and required the help of the Saudi Arabia’s health ministry, Red Cross and civil defence service.

The ultra-obese 20-year-old, who weighs the same as two baby elephants or eight average-sized men, was finally removed from a second-floor bedroom after King Abdullah granted permission for part of his house to be demolished.

King Abdullah also ordered a custom-made “rescue bed” to be flown in from the United States, which was carried by forklift truck to a specially reinforced ambulance.

Mr Shaeri, who was filmed grinning throughout his rescue, was subsequently transported by aeroplane from Jazan to a hospital in Saudi Arabia’s capital city Riyadh.

Ministry of Health spokesman Dr Abdullah al Rabeeah called the king’s intervention a “humanitarian gesture”, adding that he had previously been involved in the “rescue” of two siblings who weighed over 45 stone each earlier in the year.