17 hostages rescued in Marawi
Government forces have rescued 17 hostages in Marawi City during the conduct of military operation in the area on Wednesday.
“Yes, it is true that 17 more hostages were rescued in Marawi, nine males and eight females, ages ranging from 18-75,” Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said.
Lorenzana refused to say how they were rescued because of an ongoing effort to rescue other hostages.
"Details of the rescue are confidential because efforts to rescue the remaining hostages are still ongoing,” he said.
Col. Edgard Arevalo, AFP Public Affairs Chief, said the military is trying to rescue 26 other hostages.
Arevalo said based on the latest information from the ground troops the areas being cleared inside the battle zone in Marawi have decreased to five to seven hectares.
“Around 40 local terrorist group (members) are still left there. Like what we said, we include the number of... hostages that they have forcibly converted into fighters,” he said.
Arevalo said the number of fatalities on government side has reached to 155, while 753 terrorist were killed. Robina Asido/DMS