DEFENSE Secretary Delfin Lorenzana announced Wednesday that 17 more hostages were rescued from the Maute group in the strife-torn Marawi City.

Lorenzana said the rescued hostages consist of nine males and eight females ages 18 to 75.

He refused, however, to provide additional information about the rescue as military operations continue to rescue more hostages.

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Public Affairs Office Edgard Arevalo said details on the rescue, which happened "most likely" during the wee hours of October 4, Wednesday. will be provided soon.

"We should understand that we cannot just release accomplishments like this...Rescue operations for the remaining hostages are still ongoing and we don’t want the enemy to know the successful rescue because they might do drastic actions," he said.

Arevalo said the rescued hostages are undergoing medical check-up and having some rest.

He said 26 more hostages remain with the Maute group in Marawi.

The conflict in Marawi started on May 23, prompting President Rodrigo Duterte to place Mindanao under a martial rule. The proclamation was extended until the end of this year. (SunStar Philippines)