- The Washington Times - Monday, August 19, 2013

A man is holding several people hostage at a government center in the Bavarian city of Ingolstadt, German police said Monday.

It’s not clear what weapons the man has or what his motives are for taking the hostages, The Associated Press reported. Police spokesman Guenther Beck said that the man grabbed the hostages shortly before 9 a.m. local time (3 a.m. EDT) and that authorities have since been talking with him on the telephone.

The exact number or identities of the hostages aren’t known. Neither is the identity of the man.

Mr. Beck only said the man had taken “several,” AP reported.

The incident occurred just hours before German Chancellor Angela Merkel was supposed to arrive at the city for a rally in preview of national elections that are set for Sept. 22. Bavaria votes a week earlier than the rest of the country, AP said.

The city hall where the hostages are being held is one of two such facilities in Ingolstadt. It houses the mayor’s office and the local tourist information office and was built hundreds of years ago.