‘Islamist’ gunman holds hostages in Sydney cafe siege
A gunman with links to Islamist State is holding dozens of staff and customers hostage at a cafe in Sydney, Australia.
As many as 30 hostages are thought to be held by the gunman who stormed into the Lint cafe in Sydney city centre holding a gun.
The gunman forced crying women to hold a black Islamic flag up to the window as he held a shotgun. Five people have escaped from the building which is surrounded by armed police. Officers have made contact with the gunman.
Witnesses described how the man, wearing a headband with Arabic writing across it, walked into the Lindt cafe in Martin Place and produced a shotgun from a blue bag shortly before 10am local time.
Hostages were seen with their hands pressed against the windows holding up the Shahada flag belonging to the extremist group Jabhat al-Nusra.