All hostages freed in Netherlands, suspect held, police say

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Dutch police detain a man who walked out of nightclub where hostages were being held, after hours-long standoff.

Everyone being held hostage in a town in central Netherlands is now free and a suspect is in custody, Dutch police have said, after a standoff that lasted several hours.

“The last hostage has just been released. One person was arrested, we cannot give more information at the moment,” police said in a message on X on Saturday.

The man walked out of the club in the town of Ede, before being ordered by armed police to kneel with his hands on his head. He was then handcuffed before being led into a waiting police car.

Earlier on Saturday police said several people were taken hostage in a building in the centre of Ede, located 85km (53 miles) southeast of Amsterdam.

Police said on X there was “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 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. Images from the scene in Ede showed police and firefighters on the streets in a cordoned-off area.

Authorities called on residents to avoid the town centre. Trains to and from Ede were cancelled, railway operator NS said on its website.

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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