A Malian woman has given birth to nine babies at once — after only expecting seven, according to Mali's Minister of Health and the Moroccan clinic where the nonuplets were born.
It appears to be the first time on record that a woman has given birth to nine surviving babies at once.
The five girls, four boys, and their mother, "are all doing well," Mali's health minister Rachid Koudhari said in a statement.
The mother, 25-year-old Halima Cisse, gave birth to the babies by caesarean section on Tuesday in Morocco after being sent there for special care, Mali's top health official announced.
Associated Press reporters saw some of the babies wiggling their hands and feet inside incubators Wednesday in the private Ain Borja clinic in Casablanca.
Medical staff checked their status regularly in a neo-natal ward wallpapered with cartoon characters.
Cisse had been expecting seven babies.
Malian doctors, under government orders, sent her to Morocco for the births because hospitals in Mali, one of the world's poorest countries, are ill-equipped to deal with such an exceptional multiple pregnancy.
The Casablanca clinic's director, Youssef Alaoui, said he ha been contacted by Malian doctors about the case a month and a half ago but hey were not expecting nine babies.
Cisse gave birth prematurely at 30 weeks and suffered heavy bleeding for which she was given a blood transfusion.
She is now in stable condition.
The Guinness Book of World Records said in an email to The Associated Press on Wednesday that its current record for most living births at once is eight, and that it is verifying the Morocco birth.
Alaoui told The Associated Press that as far as he was aware, she had not used any fertility treatments.