Man killed after hostage situation in German cinema complex

Initial reports suggested up to 50 people had been hurt

Germany, cinema, complex, shooting, Viernheim

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A masked man apparently armed with a rifle has been killed after taking people hostage at a cinema complex in southwest Germany.

Initial German media reports suggested up to 50 people had been hurt - but police say there were no injuries.

The man entered the Kinopolis cinema complex in Viernheim at around 3.00pm and fired four shots.

A police spokeswoman at the scene, Christiane Kompus, said he took several hostages, but did not have a precise number.

Officers "successively entered the cinema and were able to locate the man and the people he was holding," she said.

"There was a threat situation and the man was then shot dead by a colleague."

Ms Kompus said police were at the scene for about three hours and no-one else was hurt.

She had no information on the assailant's identity and motives.

Hesse state's interior minister, Peter Beuth, said it was not clear if his weapon was real.

He told the regional legislature in Wiesbaden the man was masked and appeared to be "disturbed".

Police say they do not believe he was a terrorist.