ARIRANG NEWS 16:00
Good to have you with us and welcome to Arirang News. Live from our studio
in Seoul, I′m Laah Hyun-kyung.
Title: Hostage situation unfolds at cafe in Sydney, Australia
We begin with the hostage situation in Sydney… where up to 50 people are
reported to have been held captive since Monday morning, local time.
There haven′t been any reports of bombings or casualties… but nearby
buildings have been evacuated.
For more, we now go live to our Kim Min-ji, who′s been following the case
for us since the beginning.
So, Min-ji, what′s the latest?
MJ: Over the past few hours, five hostages have been seen escaping from
inside the Lindt cafe in Martin Place.
Three men and two women were seen running out a door on the side of the
building on two separate occasions.
The Korean consulate in Sydney has confirmed that one of them is a
Korean-Australian who was being held inside.
She is believed to be one of the staff members who were working inside the
Police are currently attending to all those that have gotten out,… and it
hasn′t been announced whether they escaped or were released.
Amid the standoff,… Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott earlier
addressed the nation,… and urged people to stay calm.
“Australia is a peaceful open and generous society, nothing should ever
change that. And that′s why I would urge all Australians today to go about
their business as usual.”
He also provided a national security hotline should people suspect that
another attack is in the works.
So, police have not identified who is behind the attack,… but there have
been photos seen with people holding up a black flag with white Arabic
writing on it?
MJ: That′s right.
The flag raised suspicions that the attack could be linked to Islamic State
However, reports suggest it is NOT an Islamic State flag.
Instead, it bears the Shahada a neutral Islamic creed that′s seen on things
like the Saudi Arabian flag… but also embraced by jihadist groups.
Meanwhile, police say the number of hostages inside the cafe is unknown,…
although reports say the number is as high as 50.
Police have confirmed that they′re looking at one armed suspect right
now,… and say they have made contact.
They have cordoned off the area,… and are also temporarily controlling
the air space above Sydney.
There were concerns about a situation like this happening in Australia
before. The threat of a terror attack like this one has loomed for some
In September, the country raised its terror threat level and conducted
large-scale counter terror raids across the country.
Also this morning, police arrested a man in Sydney on charges of terrorism
But police say, they don′t believe this hostage situation inside the cafe
has any connection to the other cases.
This is obviously a very fluid situation that we′ll continue to keep an eye
on. Kim Min-ji, reporting live from the Arirang News Center.
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