'Car with gas cylinders found near military hospital' in Lille

Lille on lockdown after car filled with gas cylinders and a suitcase is spotted near French city’s military hospital

  • Black Citroen Picasso with broken windows found parked near a military hospital
  • Large area of central Lille closed off by police after three canisters found in car
  • Nearby apartments evacuated and residents on ground floor taken to safety

Lille is on Lockdown today after a car with three gas canisters was reportedly found near a military hospital in the French city.

A vehicle containing three gas cyclinders and a suitcase was reported to emergency services at around 11.30am this afternoon, according to local media.

The black Citroen Picasso with broken windows was found parked near a military hospital, French newspaper La Voix du Nord reports.

A large area between the Morrison Square, Bethune Road and Place de la Republique has been cordoned of by police for fears the canisters may explode.

Police could be seen in the in Rue de l’Hôpital-Militaire after a black Citroen Picasso with broken windows was found with three gas canisters inside 

Police said the suspicious vehicle contained what appeared to be a bag and of gas bottle outside a bar called L’Idiot (The Idiot), which is near the hospital.

Bomb disposal experts are reportedly at the scene while residents have been advised to avoid the area.

The spot where the car was found on Rue de l’Hôpital-Militaire is just a few hundred yards from Place Rihour where a Christmas Market is held from Monday to Sunday. 

Nearby apartments have been evacuated and residents on the ground floor have been taken to safety, local media reports.

Lille Christmas market in Place Rihour (pictured in a stock image) was just a few hundred yards from where the suspicious car was found today

A large area around the Rue de l’Hôpital-Militaire in the center of Lille was also evacuated.

Students of the ECG business school had to leave the building, according to Grand Lille TV.

In July Lille suffered another bomb scare when the courthouse in the city was evacuated after an anonymous threat was called in.

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