Two hostage-takers arrested in France

The two hostage-takers involved in today's bank hold-up south of Paris have been arrested.

The two hostage-takers involved in today's bank hold-up south of Paris have been arrested.

The eight people taken captive were later released unharmed, police said.

Police were seen going into the bank with guns drawn, although no shots were heard. Police later led out the two hostage-takers, their heads hidden under jackets.

The hold-up was at a branch of the Credit Lyonnais bank at a wholesale food market in Rungis, a southern suburb of Paris, near Orly international airport and about seven miles from the city centre.

The would-be robbers initially took eight people hostage, but almost immediately released one - a woman - and she alerted police, said Patrick Trotignon, a police spokesman.

The other hostages were released in small groups during negotiations with police.

The hostage-takers agreed to turn themselves in on condition that their faces be hidden as they were lead out of the bank, said Trotignon.

"They wanted money but their ambitions exceeded their abilities," he said.

Police said the hostage-takers had been armed with handguns.

Police in bullet-proof vests cordoned off the area, keeping TV crews well away.

The bank is one of about 20 grouped together in an area known as "the money wall" by market employees, market spokesman Philippe Stisi said.

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