April 18, 2024

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DEVELOPING STORY,

The hostages are are being held in a building in town of Ede, with ‘no indication of a terrorist motive’.

Multiple people are being held hostage in a building in the town of Ede, in central Netherlands, police have said.

On Saturday, heavily armed police cordoned off part of the town, located 85km (53 miles) southeast of Amsterdam, police spokesman Simon Klok told The Associated Press news agency.

“A hostage situation involving several people is underway in a building in the centre” of Ede, police said in a statement on X. “At the moment there is no indication of a terrorist motive”.

In a subsequent update, police said three hostages have been released but that “the situation is not over yet”.

It was not immediately known how many people were held captive.

The hostages were being held at the local Petticoat nightclub by a man with weapons and explosives, national newspaper De Telegraaf reported, citing several anonymous sources.

Earlier, officers evacuated 150 homes near a central square, saying there was a person in the area “who could be a danger to themself or others”.

A reporter for broadcaster NOS said a remote-controlled robot was at the scene as well as anti-explosives units and police in protective gear.

Authorities called on residents to avoid the town centre and train traffic was being diverted.

Images from the scene in Ede showed police and firefighters on the streets in a cordoned-off area.

The municipality said all shops in the centre of Ede would remain closed.

The Netherlands has seen a series of attacks but not on the scale of other European countries, such as France or the United Kingdom.

In 2019, the country was stunned by a shooting spree on a tram in the city of Utrecht that killed four people.

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