Breaking news: Masked gunman killed after storming German cinema

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France 24 / YouTube
Armed police outside the complex, where the man planned to take hostages.

SWAT teams in south-west Germany have killed a gunman who reportedly stormed a cinema complex and opened fire with the objective of taking hostages.

The attack happened shortly after 3pm local time at the Kinepolis complex in Viernheim near Frankfurt and saw armed police quickly flock to the scene.

Tear gas released in an attempt to subdue the assailant is understood to have injured several dozen people and there are no reported fatalities other than the perpetrator.

Though details remain hazy it is being reported in German media that the man wore a mask and a cartridge belt around his shoulder and fired one shot in the air as an alarm. Dozens of cinema-goers fled the scene but around 50 were cornered by the gunman before police made their move.

Initial estimations from the authorities suggest that the incident was not a terrorist attack but the man’s identity or motivations are at this point unclear.

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