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Sewer pipe rescue baby handed back over to mum

A newborn baby who was rescued from a sewer pipe in China has been returned to his mother.

Authorities have decided the infant became trapped in the pipe underneath a squat toilet in Pujiang county as the result of an accident and the 22-year-old woman will face no charges.

The boy's rescue became a worldwide sensation after footage of the two-hour procedure to cut the infant from a section of piping was broadcast. The case prompted both horror and an outpouring of charity on behalf of the child.

The boy has been taken away from a hospital by his mother and a man believed to be the father.

The man has requested a paternity test and – if the baby is his – is ready to discuss with the woman how to support the baby.

The case has provoked debate over China's lack of proper education about sex and birth in many schools. Unwanted pregnancies have been on the rise because of an increasingly lax attitude toward pre-marital sex in the country.

Police concluded that the 22-year-old single woman faces no charges, deciding she did not initially step forward because she was frightened.

The woman told police she got pregnant after a brief affair with the man, hid her pregnancy from family and neighbours, and secretly delivered the child on Saturday in a rental building's toilet.