Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte (Photo: EPA/VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on August 30 has allowed the government army to decide suitable measures to take back areas that under insurgents’ control in the southern city of Marawi on Mindanao Island.

In a speech, Duterte stressed that the 100-day fight could not last forever, adding that situation in Marawi was beyond control and in a stalemate.

The Philippine President said he has approved the government army’s plan to attack local mosques, where militants are holding hostages, although he had rejected it at first. He explained that the stalemate could not prolong for more than one year. Meanwhile, some people have been sent to persuade the militants to release hostages without hurting them.

Gunmen who had pledged allegiance to the self-claimed Islamic State (IS) have occupied Marawi, a big city of Muslim in southern Philippines since May. Clashes between Philippine security forces and the insurgents have claimed more than 600 lives. 

The martial law which imposed on Mindanao has been extended till this year’s end to make it easier for security forces to sweep terrorists out of the south.-VNA