Doctors had detected only seven babies during a scan.
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A 25-year-old woman from Mali surprisingly gave birth to nine babies on Tuesday, the BBC reports.
With assistance from the West African country’s government, Halima Cisse was flown out to Morocco, where she received specialist care and shocked doctors by delivering nonuplets by Caesarian section. Doctors had reportedly only detected seven babies during a scan.
“I’m very happy,” Cisse’s husband, Adjudant Kader Arby, told the network. “My wife and the babies [five girls and four boys] are doing well.”
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During her pregnancy, Cisse had become somewhat of a local celebrity in Mali, Reuters notes. Doctors, however, were concerned about her babies’ chances of survival, leading to government intervention. Cisse first spent two weeks at a hospital in Mali’s capital, Bamako, before she was moved to Morocco on March 30, Mali’s health minister Fanta Siby said, according to the BBC.
“God gave us these children,” Arby, who already shares an older daughter with Cisse, told the network. “He is the one to decide what will happen to them. I’m not worried about that. When the almighty does something, he knows why.”
Thirty-three-year-old Nadya Suleman currently holds the Guinness World Record for the most children delivered at birth to survive after giving birth to eight babies in the U.S. in 2009. There have been previously recorded cases in which two women — one in Australia and one in Malaysia — gave birth to nonuplets, but none of the babies reportedly survived after a few days.
Cisse and her nine babies are expected to return home in several weeks, according to the BBC.