‘Cologne-Style’ Attacks on Women Reported in Austria, Switzerland

© AFP 2022 / Markus Boehm / dpa Picture taken on December 31, 2015 shows people gathering in front of the main railway station in Cologne, western Germany
Picture taken on December 31, 2015 shows people gathering in front of the main railway station in Cologne, western Germany - Sputnik International
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Several women were robbed and sexually harassed in Austria and Switzerland, on New Year's Eve, and there have been about many similar cases also reported in Hamburg and other German cities with the victims saying that they had been robbed, groped and molested by groups of “dark-skinned men,” an Austrian newspaper reported.

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The attacks in Salzburg and Zurich were reported within hours of similar assaults in Cologne where numerous criminal complaints have been filed about robbery and sexual abuse, including two reported rapes by perpetrators who allegedly staged orchestrated attacks on mainly female revelers in the crowds, Der Standard wrote on Thursday.

Several cases of sexual assaults and robberies have been reported also in Stuttgart, Dusseldorf, Munich and Frankfurt.

© AFP 2022 / Markus BOEHM / dpaPicture taken on December 31, 2015 shows people gathering in front of the main railway station in Cologne, western Germany
Picture taken on December 31, 2015 shows people gathering in front of the main railway station in Cologne, western Germany - Sputnik International
Picture taken on December 31, 2015 shows people gathering in front of the main railway station in Cologne, western Germany

Cologne police said on Tuesday that ninety criminal incidents, many involving sexual assaults, were reported following New Year's Eve celebrations in the city.

Women hold up placards that read Mrs. Merkel: Where are you? What are you saying? This worries us! and Thanks (Cologne mayor Henriette) Reker!! Poor Cologne (R) during a protest in front of the Cologne Cathedral, Germany, January 5, 2016 - Sputnik International
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The victims described the attackers as gangs of intoxicated Arab or North African men between the ages of 15 and 35.

Many of the assaults were apparently meant to distract, allowing attackers to snip wallets, cellphones and other devices. Those who tried to fight off the assailants were told in no uncertain terms to get back or face the consequences.

Media reports said that the attacks appeared to have been organized as around 1,000 young men arrived in large groups, seemingly with the specific intention of carrying out attacks on women.

On Thursday Cologne police said that most of the suspects in the New Year’s Eve attacks had entered the country only recently and had applied for refugee status. Many of them are migrants from Syria and North Africa.

A German ex-policeman, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that Cologne-style attacks on women are common and routinely hushed up by the authorities.

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