Sydney, Dec 15: Three people ran out of a Sydney cafe where a gunman has taken hostages and displayed an Islamic flag against the window, police said today, adding that no one has yet been harmed.
According to New South Wales Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn, three people who came out of Lindt Cafe at Martin Place were with police.
Three people - one staff member and two others - have been seen on footage shown on Channel 7 running from the cafe. "The information that I have is that nobody has been harmed or injured at the moment," she said.
"We clearly are dealing with a situation that is unfolding and it's happening as we speak and the most important thing is the safety of those hostages and I wouldn't want to do anything that may impact on the safety of those hostages." Burn said she could not confirm the number of people remaining inside the cafe. "Those operational details will be forthcoming but its not a good time to speculate."
"Police negotiators have had contact and they will continue to have contact," she said. "A peaceful resolution will be what we are working for," she said. The siege incident came hours after a Sydney man was arrested in a counter-terrorism raid but the Commissioner said the two didn't appear to be connected.
As a security precaution, the US Consulate General in Sydney has been evacuated, along with other buildings in the vicinity of Martin Place.