Armed police negotiate with man in Southbank cafe

Written By komlim puldel on Minggu, 05 April 2015 | 23.08

Heavily armed police gather at Southbank. Picture: Monique Hore Source: HeraldSun

ARMED police continue negotiations with a man who has barricaded himself inside a Southbank restaurant with a woman, as the standoff enters its fourth hour.

Police have extended the exclusion zone around the siege, pushing people off the public square near the site.

Twi angle grinders have been carried by police into the cordoned-off area.

They have closed Riverside Quay to traffic and pedestrians between Cook St and Southgate Ave.

Authorities were called to Riverside Quay about 10pm.

It is not clear whether the man has any weapons, or whether the pair know each other.

The incident is not believed to be ideologically motivated.

The Critical Incident Response Team and the dog squad are among police blocking the promenade between the 'love lock' bridge at Southbank and the Othello restaurant.

Witnesses said they saw police storm the area with shields about 10.40pm.

Paramedics with a stretcher remained on standby at the scene as a crowd of concerned passersby watched on.

A group of people believed to know those inside the restaurant watched on.

Police, both uniformed and in plain clothes, huddled near an entrance to a Riverside Quay building.

Cristina Grimaldi, who lives five minutes walk from the promenade, described the scene as like "a movie".

"We were walking home and we saw the cops and we wondered what happened.

"It is the first time we have seen so many police."

Police at the scene are diverting people away from the area saying a crime is currently being committed.

Picture: Brendan Francis Source: HeraldSun

Picture: Brendan Francis Source: HeraldSun

Picture: Twitter / @nathan28423118 Source: Supplied

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