Dutch police arrest man in radio station hostage drama

Dutch police securing the area near the NPO 3FM public radio-television building in Hilversum, on Aug 17, 2017.
Dutch police securing the area near the NPO 3FM public radio-television building in Hilversum, on Aug 17, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

THE HAGUE (AFP) – Dutch police arrested a man on Thursday (Aug 17) in the country’s central broadcasting centre of Hilversum, after he took a woman hostage following a spat in a parking lot, a spokesman said.

“What we know is that a man and a woman had a fight in a parking lot outside the building,” said police spokesman Helen de Heer. 

“The man threatened the woman and then both of them went inside the building,” she told AFP shortly after the crisis started.

Police arrested the man and the woman was safe, news agency ANP reported just after 0730 GMT (3.30pm Singapore time), but police could not immediately be reached for comment.

The incident started shortly before 0700 GMT (3pm Singapore time) in the central Dutch town south-east of Amsterdam, where the national broadcaster NPO as well as several private television and media firms are based.

Police surrounded the building and nobody was allowed to enter, De Heer said. Staff inside the building, which houses one arm of NPO, were unharmed.

It was not immediately clear whether there was a direct link between the incident and the broadcaster.

The NOS newscaster said the man was armed with a knife. 

“We have the same information, but we are not sure,” the police spokesman said.