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German cinema shooting not a terrorist attack: Reports

Berlin (Germany): German security sources on Thursday said the masked armed assailant, who was shot dead by police after shooting up a German cinema, was likely a lone perpetrator and not a terrorist, reported dpa, international newswire of the German Press Agency.

Although a police spokeswoman said the hostages held by the gunman have been released unhurt, it is unclear how many hostages were taken after the man barricaded himself inside the cinema, located in the south-western town of Viernheim, an industrial town in the state of Hesse.

There were conflicting reports about the number of people injured during the incident, with police officials saying they could not confirm that anyone except the shooter had been hurt or killed.

Local media reported that 20-50 people had been injured, while German newspaper Bild said 25 people had been injured by tear gas lobbed by police as they were storming the building.

Hesse Interior Minister Peter Beuth told Parliament that Special Forces “fought and killed” the man, who had been visibly confused and fired at least four shots inside the cinema with a rifle.

The identity and motive of the shooter have yet to be confirmed.

The cinema complex was cordoned off and a special police commando was on its way to the scene by helicopter, a Frankfurt police spokesman said. (ANI)