Armed man takes hostages at Lebanese commercial bank

AFP

An armed man demanding deposits frozen by his bank took an unspecified number of hostages on Thursday at the Federal Bank of Lebanon, a security source said and a Reuters witness said.

Lebanese banks have limited withdrawals of hard currency for most depositors during the country's three-year financial meltdown, which has left more than three-quarters of the population poor.

The man entered the Federal Bank of Lebanon branch in the Hamra neighbourhood in west Beirut just before noon on Thursday with a firearm, the security source told Reuters.

Some customers in the bank managed to flee before he shut the doors on the rest, said the source, who was not able to specify how many clients or employees were in the branch.

Two shots were subsequently fired, according to Lebanese media station Al-Jadeed.

A Reuters witness could see a bearded man in a black shirt behind the gated entrance to the bank speaking to several men in plainclothes on the outside.

"Let them give me back my money!" he was heard telling them.

More from International

Coming Up on Dubai Eye

  • Extra Time

    7:00pm - 10:00pm

    Chris & Robbie bring you the latest from the sporting world plus interviews with upcoming and legendary sporting stars.

  • Nights on Dubai Eye 103.8

    10:00pm - 11:00pm

    Dubai Eye complements the conversation with the music you love from the eighties, nineties and newer.

BUSINESS BREAKFAST LATEST

On Dubai Eye

  • Flying Taxis

    It sounds like an episode of The Jetsons, but the sight of flying taxis whizzing around our cities could be much closer than you think.

  • Tough penalties for deliberate tax evasion

    The UAE has said that tougher penalties will come into force from 1st August for not keeping proper corporate tax records.