Consulate raiders still on run despite manhunt
8 February 2005, GENEVA-Swiss police were still hunting three thieves who raided the Spanish consulate in the Swiss capital Bern.
8 February 2005
GENEVA-Swiss police were still hunting three thieves who raided the Spanish consulate in the Swiss capital Bern.
The three thieves caused a major hostage alert on Monday when they stormed the Spanish consulate
Two people were taken hostage and a guard was stabbed by one of the raiders.
But three hours after the drama started, an elite Swiss police unit raided the consulate -only to find the would-be thieves had fled.
It was thought they had entered the consulate in the hope of stealing cash from the safe, but were understood to have come away empty-handed.
The drama began just after 8am when the three men entered the consulate armed with a gun and a knife.
Police quickly discounted the possibility that they were a terrorist gang.
An elite Swiss police squad quickly surrounded the consulate with armoured cars and snipers.
By about 10am, security forces had re-established control over the consulate.
Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Moratinos said later that the hostage situation had ended quickly though one security guard have been injured.
The Spanish news agency EFE quoted Emilio Sánchez, a diplomat, who said an unknown person had broken into the consulate at about 8am after hitting an employee over the head.
Twelve people work in the consulate, eight or nine of them Spanish and the others Swiss, according to CNN televisión channel.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news