A hostage crisis in the northern French town of Roubaix near the Belgian border has been resolved. People are safe and several suspects have been arrested. The attempted robbery is unlikely to have been linked to the Paris terror attacks, authorities said.The area has been cordoned off by police, RTL reported, adding that gunfire can be heard.
La Voix du Nord newspaper says the hostage takers are armed with Kalashnikovs. Witnesses told the daily that the incident occurred at around 7:00pm local time (18:00 GMT) at a service station. According to other reports, this may be inside a residential building.
One of the hostage takers was killed during the police operation, according to local officials.
It is not clear how many people were held hostage. Gunshots were fired, according to local residents.
The armed men had been planning a robbery targeting a banker, reports say.
“There were three guys with Kalasnikovs, they shot at police and police shot at them,” a local resident named Salah told RT. “There are a lot of police on the streets,” he added.