Hostage taken in robbery gone wrong at Amsterdam Apple store (update)

A man in camouflage gear inside the Apple store. Photo: Laurens Bosch ANP
A man in a camouflage jacket inside the Apple store. Photo: Laurens Bosch ANP

Armed police have sealed off the Leidseplein in central Amsterdam because of a hostage situation in the Apple store, located on the edge of the square.

Photos taken of the shop windows appear to show someone being threatened with a gun.

The incident started at around 5.40 pm, and eyewitnesses have told local broadcaster AT5 that shop staff rushed out of the building in a panic.

One person also reported hearing gun shots within the store, which is arranged over several floors.

‘Police were running around in a big group with guns pointed at the Apple store,’ Tim Wagemakers, who works at the nearby Balie debating centre said.

Another eyewitness told the Parool that two men left the store at around 6pm and when they spotted the police one of them grabbed a passerby and put a gun to his head. Both then returned to the store with their hostage.

Shortly before 7pm, police confirmed that there was someone with a gun in the store. ‘The police are present with a large number of specialists to get the situation under control,’ police said.

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