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Gunman takes hostages at upscale mall in Manila, Philippines

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By The Associated Press  with NBC News World News
Members of a police SWAT team along with private guards stand outside one of the entrances to a mall after a hostage situation was reported in suburban Manila on Monday, March 2, 2020.   -   Copyright  Ted Aljibe

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine police on Monday surrounded a shopping mall in an upscale district in Manila after a gunman opened fire and took people inside hostage.

The incident happened at the V-Mall in the San Juan area of the Philippine capital.

San Juan Mayor Francis Zamora told reporters that approximately 30 people are being held by the gunman. He said the exact number of hostages is uncertain and is based on the size of the office.

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He said the gunman is a disgruntled former security guard who had been removed from his job at the mall. Zamora said the gunman shot one person, who is in stable condition at a nearby hospital.

More than a dozen SWAT commandos were seen entering the mall, assault rifles ready. Policemen stood by outside, along with an ambulance.