Hostages held by terrorist forces in Marawi City were guarded by children members of the Maute group, a report on Balitanghali on Sunday revealed.
According to a report by Chino Gaston, escapees said they were held captive by the Maute group inside a mosque where they were guarded by children.
They said they were able to escape after coordinating with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) through a cellphone which they hid from their captors.
They then had to swim to be able to meet the government troops and head to safety.
"Naglangoy kami ng 1,000 plus meters hanggang dumating kami doon," one of the escapees said.
Meanwhile, the military said a total of 731 people have been killed in the ongoing crisis in Marawi City.
It said a total of 558 Maute group members and 128 troops have been killed. The number of civilians killed by the terrorist was still at 45. —Jon Viktor D. Cabuenas/BM/ALG, GMA News