A gunman has locked himself in a room at a psychiatric hospital in Istanbul and threatened to kill himself and others.

Patients and staff have been evacuated from Istanbul University’s Cerahpasa hospital and officers are negotiating with the armed man, Turkish media reports.

Earlier reports said the man had taken hostages, but in a statement to journalists hospital chief Dr. Zekayi Kutlubay said the man was armed but alone in the room.

Turkish newspaper Hurriyet reports that the gunman was a former police officer who had been receiving psychiatric treatment at the hospital.

Authorities remain on high alert in Istanbul in the wake of a number of terror attacks in recent months, including the assault on the Reina nightclub on New Year’s Eve, which left 39 people dead.

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