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France: Gunman takes 3 hostage in bank
French gunman holding hostages in bank; prosecutor says he's acting for religious reasons
By The Associated Press

TOULOUSE, France (AP) ' A French prosecutor says that a gunman holding three hostages in a bank in the southern city of Toulouse is doing so for religious reasons.

Police say negotiations are under way with the gunman. Prosecutor Michel Valet said the gunman claims he is "acting not for money but for his religious convictions."

He did not say what faith the gunman adheres to.

French media reports say the gunman is claiming allegiance to al-Qaida. Police officials who spoke to The Associated Press could not confirm this claim.

Police say a gunshot was fired early in the hostage-taking. An AP journalist at the scene heard another shot fired mid-afternoon, but the source of the shot was unclear.

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