This is not good. Get praying folks, there could be as many as 40 hostages including women and children.
Baghdad, Oct 31 (DPA) Members of the Al Qaeda affiliated Islamic State of Iraq were holding hostages inside a church in central Baghdad Sunday and had threatened to kill them if security forces, who have surrounded the building, tried to enter.
‘An armed attack targeted the Sayedat al-Najah Church in al-Karrada, central Baghdad,’ Qassem Atta, spokesman for Baghdad Operations Command, told state-run Iraqiya TV. ‘Security forces are cordoning off the church and dealing with the situation,’ he added.
The militants were demanding the release of Al Qaeda members in Iraq and Egypt, Al-Baghdadiya TV reported.
Witnesses told DPA that the church was targeted during the Sunday service, adding that the sound of gunfire could be heard across al-Karrada.
It was not clear how many people were being held inside the church, but women and children were reportedly among the hostages.
Further Media Links:
UPDATE: It looks like police may have stormed the church, no concrete details yet:
BBC ticker tape is currently reporting:
BREAKING NEWS: Iraqi forces storm church where around 40 Christians were being held hostage, reports say
Keep praying folks.
Associated Press reporting the siege has ended with as many as 100 hostages freed, no details on casualties as yet.
It looks as if there were some tragic losses: