Switzerland: Police shoot dead axe-wielding hostage-taker on train

  • By Imogen Foulkes & Ian Casey
  • BBC News, Geneva and London

Image supply, Getty Images

Image caption,

Police tried to speak to the hostage taker for a number of hours

Police in Switzerland have shot dead a person armed with an axe and a knife who took 15 passengers hostage on a train on Thursday evening.

The hostage-taker, reported to be a 32-year-old asylum seeker from Iran, boarded an area train close to Yverdon.

He pressured the motive force to cease the train and to affix passengers within the carriage.

Officers stormed the train and “fatally wounded” the person after he attacked them, police experiences say. The hostages have been all launched unhurt.

According to native media, the authorities have been alerted by passengers on the train and greater than 60 officers have been in attendance.

Police, together with a particular unit from Geneva, surrounded the train and spent a number of hours attempting to speak to the person in English and in Farsi, with out success.

Late at evening, after they noticed the hostage-taker shifting away from the passengers, they stormed the train utilizing stun grenades.

According to police experiences, the person attacked the police, at which level they used their firearms to guard the hostages and themselves, and the hostage taker was fatally shot.

Police say the motive for the hostage-taking is unclear. One passenger on the train mentioned the perpetrator appeared “very stressed”.

Local experiences say hostages and their households are being supported by the Swiss well being service’s psychological division.

Little is thought in regards to the man, besides that he was initially from Iran and had been assigned to an asylum seeker centre in Neuchatel.

Hostage dramas are uncommon in Switzerland, however have beforehand taken place at banks and companies. In January 2022, staff at a watch-making agency have been taken hostage and compelled to open a vault.

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