Police evacuate Dresden shopping center following hostage-taking | world news

Police evacuated a shopping center and surrounding area in the eastern German city of Dresden after breaking up a hostage situation.

In a statement published on Twitterpolice confirmed the hostage situation was over, with two people apparently unharmed in their charge, after shots were reportedly fired.

It was not immediately clear if a suspect had been arrested.

At around 08:30 local time (0730 GMT), Radio Dresden reported that a gunman entered the Ammonhof office building, where the broadcaster is located, and shots were fired.

Officers urged individuals to avoid the city center on Saturday morning and ordered the Striezelmarkt Christmas market to remain closed while the operation unfolded.

Shortly after 11:30 a.m. local time (10:30 GMT), police confirmed they had contact with the attacker, who allegedly took two hostages in the Altmarkt-Galerie shopping center, with a negotiating group at the scene.

Radio Dresden reported that police spokesman Thomas Geithner made an official press statement about the operation.

The radio reported: “According to Geithner, the man is mentally ill. Appropriate experts have therefore been consulted. The man should be persuaded to voluntarily give up and end the situation.”

Police have separately confirmed that a 62-year-old woman was found dead in an apartment building in Prohlis, Dresden, on Saturday. His 40-year-old son has been named as a suspect.

Media outlet TAG24 reported that police said the hostage-taking at the Altmarkt-Galerie shopping center was linked to the murder, but declined to provide further details.

The town center lockdown has now been lifted, with police saying the incident is “no longer a dangerous situation”. But the Altmarkt-Galerie shopping center remains closed.

The incident comes as security has focused on Germany, after investigators foiled a
far-right plot to overthrow the German government and install an aristocrat as head of a new state.


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