Cologne violence was likely planned: German justice minister

2016-01-10 20:00

(iStock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Berlin - Germany's Justice Minister Heiko Maas said Sunday that the shocking spate of sexual assaults during New Year festivities in Cologne was organised.

"For such a horde of people to meet and commit such crimes, it has to have been planned somehow," he told Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

"No one can tell me that this was not coordinated or planned. The suspicion is that a specific date and an expected crowd was picked," he said, adding that if confirmed, that would "take on a new dimension".

Quoting confidential police reports, Bild am Sonntag said some North Africans had sent out calls using social networks for people to gather in Cologne on New Year's Eve.

Young men not only from Cologne, but as far as France and Belgium responded to the call to travel to the western German city, the newspaper said.

Cologne police said they have now recorded 379 cases of New Year's Eve violence - ranging from groping to theft to two reported rapes - with asylum seekers and illegal migrants from North Africa making up the majority of suspects.

The allegations have stoked criticism of Merkel's liberal open-door policy - which brought 1.1 million new asylum seekers to Germany last year.

Read more on:    germany

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.