The Star Early Edition
Migrants target women
FRANKFURT: The mass attacks on women in the German city of Cologne on New Year’s Eve have prompted 379 criminal complaints, with investigations focused largely on asylum-seekers or illegal migrants from North Africa, police have said.
Around 40 percent of the complaints included sexual offences, including two rapes, police said, as a 100-strong force of officers continued their investigations.
The attacks, mostly targeting women and ranging from theft to sexual molestation, have prompted a highly charged debate in Germany about its open-door policy to migrants and refugees, more than a million of whom came to the country last year.
“There have been arrests and we will continue to make arrests,” a spokeswoman for the Cologne police said yesterday.
She said police had increased the number of officers on patrol. “It is then to be determined whether or not these people were involved on New Year’s Eve.”
In an earlier statement, the city’s police had said the suspects in the focus of their investigation come largely from North African countries and the investigation “concerns largely asylum-seekers and people who are staying in Germany illegally”. –