Three dead in Dutch shooting - Utrecht mayor

Armed counter-terrorism police launched a huge manhunt for the attacker, urging local residents in one of the Netherlands' biggest cities to stay indoors in case of further incidents.

Police forces stand near a tram at the 24 Oktoberplace in Utrecht, on 18 March 2019 where a shooting took place. Picture: AFP

UTRECHT - Three people were killed and nine injured in a shooting in the Dutch city of Utrecht, the mayor said Monday, adding that authorities were working on the basis of it being a terror attack.

"At this stage, we can confirm three deaths and nine wounded, three of them seriously," Utrecht Mayor Jan van Zanen said in a video statement on Twitter.

Armed counter-terrorism police launched a huge manhunt for the attacker, urging local residents in one of the Netherlands' biggest cities to stay indoors in case of further incidents.

Police released a picture of the Turkish-born suspect, naming him as 37-year-old Gokman Tanis, and warning people not to approach him.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said the incident, just days ahead of local elections, was "deeply disturbing" and police stepped up security at mosques and airports.