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Police are continuing to question a 48-year-old man arrested following a siege in Tottenham Court Road in central London.

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The man is believed to have entered a building with gas canisters strapped to him and taken hostages.

Friday’s incident sparked a major alert as both Goodge Street and Warren Street Tube stations were closed, businesses evacuated and one of the capital’s busiest shopping streets shut.

Police said the suspect, who is local, was removed from Shropshire House by officers who then carried out a search of the building.

Police received emergency calls at midday amid reports that the man was holding people captive inside the building, several floors above ground.

No hostages were inside the building when the man left, after negotiators had been sent to the scene.

Sarah O’Meara, who works for the Huffington Post, said the news website’s offices in nearby Capper Street were evacuated after the alert was raised by a woman who ran into the building.

She said: “A woman ran in off the street saying, ‘There is a guy with a bomb and he is threatening to blow himself up’ and that we needed to evacuate.”

Witnesses also spoke of seeing office equipment including computer screens, computers and a filing cabinet be thrown from the windows of the building.

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