Most children delivered at a single birth to survive
Cisse nonuplets
9 people
Morocco (Casablanca)

On 4 May 2021, nine children were born to Halima Cisse (Mali) in the Ain Borja clinic in Casablanca, Morocco. This is the first known incidence of nonpulets surviving birth.

The record previously belonged to eight babies born in 2009 to Nadya Suleman (USA) aka "Octomom".

Nonuplets are extremely rare, and until the arrival of the Cisse children, no cases had been recorded of nine babies from a single birth surviving for more than a few hours.

Doctors in Mali initially thought that Halima was carrying seven children, and on 30 March 2021, under government orders, she was flown to a clinic in Casablanca that offered specialist care. It was there that nine babies were detected.

The clinic’s director, Youssef Alaoui, confirmed that Halima had given birth prematurely on 4 May 2021 - at 30 weeks - via Caesarean section, and that each of the five girls and four boys weighed between 500 g and 1 kg (1.1 and 2.2 lb).

“The newborns and the mother are all doing well,” announced Mali’s health minister, Dr Fanta Siby, shortly after the birth.

The babies were immediately transferred to incubators and remained in the care of the clinic's paediatric neonatologist Khalil Msaif for several months following their delivery. The father, Abdelkader Arby, a sailor in the Malian Navy, remained in Mali to take care of the couple's older daughter, Souda.

Five months after their birth, the family released photographs showing the proud parents with their nine-strong brood - girls Adama, Oumou, Hawa, Kadidia and Fatouma, and boys Oumar, Elhadji, Bah and Mohammed VI. "All of them are getting on very well and are a joy to look after," said Abdelkader.

In December 2022, a year and a half after being born, the record-breaking nonuplets returned to their home country of Mali.

“It’s not easy to put them to sleep all together," Halima said. "We cuddle them so they can sleep; they really like cuddles to sleep."

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