Australian police and authorities release information about an ongoing hostage situation in a Sydney cafe. Julie Noce reports.
TV AND WEB RESTRICTIONS - NO ACCESS AUSTRALIA / .COM.AU INTERNET SITES / ANY INTERNET SITE OF ANY AUSTRALIAN BASED MEDIA ORGANISATIONS OR MOBILE PLATFORMS / AUSTRALIAN NVO CLIENTS / SMH.COM.AU / NEWS.COM.AU**~ The ongoing hostage situation inside a Lindt chocolate cafe in Sydney has the nation on high alert. Police have said there is at least one hostage taker. A spokesperson for Lindt said there were as many as 10 employees and 30 customers in the cafe. Earlier, people inside were seen holding a black and white flag similar to those used by Islamic State militants against the window. Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione. (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW SOUTH WALES POLICE COMMISSIONER ANDREW SCIPIONE, SAYING: "Well again it's a flag that we've had people looking at. We're still trying to work out exactly what it stands for. At this stage it's probably best that I don't take that any further." The hostage takers demands are not yet known. Prime Minister Tony Abbott said the country's thoughts and prayers are with those involved and urged the country to carry on. (SOUNDBITE) (English) AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER TONY ABBOTT SAYING: "The whole point of politically motivated violence, is to scare people out of being themselves. Australia is a peaceful open and generous society, nothing should ever change that. And that's why I would urge all Australians today to go about their business as usual." Police said the operations they are employing are consistent with those they would use in a terrorist situation.