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Arrest of gunman ends hostage siege in central Paris

  • Published at 11:22 pm June 12th, 2018
  • Last updated at 12:47 am June 13th, 2018
French police and special police forces (BRI) secure the street after a man takes people hostage at a business in Paris, France on June 12, 2018 Reuters

The motive for the attack was not clear but incident did not appear to be terrorism-related, police say

A gunman who took two people hostage in central Paris on Tuesday has been arrested and his victims freed “safe and sound,” police in the French capital said.

“Two hostages, including one who had petrol poured on them, have been freed,” police said.

The standoff began around 4pm (1400 GMT), with BFM television reporting that the man had entered the offices of a start-up company on the Rue des Petites Ecuries, a gritty  area of the bustling 10th arrondissement.

At least one other man was lightly injured while fighting with the hostage-taker and escaping before police arrived on the scene.

The motive for the attack was not clear but incident did not appear to be terrorism-related.

"Based on our initial investigations it could be a mentally unstable person whose motivations are still unclear," another source said.

France has been on high alert after a series of jihadist attacks in the past three years, most recently a Saturday night knife attack in Paris last month in which one person was killed.