Netherlands: major police operation for hostage taking

A hostage situation forced the evacuation of 150 homes in Ede, Netherlands, on Saturday morning.

All those taken hostage were released and the suspect was arrested, Dutch police announced early in the afternoon.

“The last hostage has just been released. One person was arrested. We cannot share more information at this time,” police said in a statement published on the social network X.

Around 8:30 a.m. local time, Gelderland police announced that a large security perimeter had been erected in the city center of Ede. Residents of the 150 houses included in the perimeter were taken care of, police said.

“A hostage-taking involving several people is underway in a building in the center. This is why several specialized services are on site,” the police force underlined on X three hours after the start of the event.


Since then, three hostages have been released. For the moment, there is no evidence to establish a link with terrorism, it was specified.

The number of hostages held at the Petticoat café since the beginning of the morning is officially unknown, with local media reporting four to five people.

Previously, the police announced that a “hostage situation involving several people [était] in progress in a building in the center of the town of Ede”, located about a hundred kilometers east of The Hague.

The local municipality said on its website that the city center had been closed and that riot police and explosives experts were at the scene.

Residents are urged to avoid the city center, and rail traffic has been diverted due to the incident.

The Netherlands has experienced a series of terrorist attacks and plots, but not on the scale experienced by other European countries, such as France or Britain.

In 2019, the country was mourned by a shooting on a tram in the city of Utrecht, which left four people dead.

A man of Turkish origin, identified as Gokmen Tanis, later admitted to having had a terrorist motive for the attack which led to the closure of the country’s fourth largest city.

Also in 2019, Dutch police charged two suspected jihadists with planning a terrorist attack involving suicide bombers and car bombs.

Authorities said an attack had been planned that year.

A young Afghan identified as “Jawed S.” stabbed two American tourists at Amsterdam Central Station in 2018, later telling judges he wanted to “protect the Prophet Muhammad.”

The attack occurred a day after far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders announced he was canceling plans to organize a drawing competition to caricature the Prophet Muhammad.

At the time, Afghan Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid urged Muslims to attack Dutch troops after this country’s “hostile act [les Pays-Bas] against all Muslims.

In 2004, Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh was assassinated in Amsterdam by a man with links to a Dutch Islamist terrorist network.

source site-64