This article has been updated.
On New Year's Eve in Cologne, Germany, an estimated 1000 men of "north African and Arab" background reportedly sexually assaulted as many as 80 women. Despite nearly 60 reports of sexual assault, authorities failed to respond for days. Amid accusations that they were attempting to cover up the alarming incident, local officials have finally confirmed that the attacks occurred, but have only managed to make five arrests.
After days with no official response to the series of crimes that shook the city, Wolfgang Albers, Chief of Police in the Rhineland city, held a press conference on Monday afternoon to confirm that they had received around 60 reports of sexual assault at the hands of a massive mob New Year's Eve.
"There was a very large number of sexual assaults there—and in a massive way."
Police Chief Wolfgang Albers
"There was a very large number of sexual assaults there—and in a massive way. Women were grabbed and attacked," Albers told the press Monday. "The crimes were committed by a group of people who, from appearance, were largely from the north African or Arab world."
According to police, as many as 80 women were attacked by the mob, some robbed and some sexually assaulted. Albers noted that at least one of the crimes could be described as a rape. Though some appear to have been immigrants, the police said that some were not.
The Local provides some details:
A group of around 500 men between the ages of 15 and 35 assembled at the central train station and in the area of the cathedral before throwing firecrackers into the masses of people celebrating the arrival of the new year.
This appears to have been a means of causing distraction, as during the disturbance groups of young men entered the crowd where they sexually assaulted women and pick-pocketed revellers.
Police then carried out a large-scale operation to clear the area of the miscreants, involving 143 local police officers and a further 70 federal officers. But due to the darkness and the sheer scale of people, Albers conceded that this operation was less than effective.
"I was groped everywhere," said on female victim. "It was a nightmare. Although we shouted and beat them, the guys did not stop. I was desperate and think I was touched around 100 times in the 200 meters. Fortunately I wore a jacket and trousers. A skirt would probably have been torn away from me."
Though they had to deploy around 200 officers to handle the mass assaults, authorities were silent on the attack for several days, leading to accusations from the community and others of a deliberate cover up. "The several day delay of confirmation of the attacks from officials roused suspicions of a cover-up," reports The Daily Caller's Russ Read. "Anabel Schunke wrote on Huffington Post’s German language site Monday accusing police officials and public media outlets of covering up the issue entirely."
As Shunke notes, despite CCTV footage clearly showing the ethnicity of the men, authorities at first refused to describe the men as Arab and North African, "so that the public would not make a connection between the crime and refugees."
After no reported action from authorities for two days, local police finally made some arrests Sunday, but only managed to round up five men who they said had threatened and robbed female travellers. It is uncertain if these men were even connected to the mob attack.
The Cologne authorities' apparent attempt to cover up the riotous actions of the immigrant men has backfired dramatically. Though major news outlets at first buried or ignored the story altogether, when it finally broke through to the public, German officials were forced to confront the ugly reality of the situation.
Interior minister for North Rhine-Westphalia Ralf Jager denounced the incident and called for action to prevent another such attack. "We will not accept that groups of North African men gather expressly for the purpose of debasing women by sexually assaulting them," said Jager.
Cologne's strongly pro-immigrant Mayor Henriette Reker even felt enough pressure to condemn the "monstrous" act, telling a German newspaper, "We cannot tolerate this development of lawlessness."
But Mayor Reker's tough talk did not last long. She was soon suggesting that German women must learn how to better handle themselves around the immigrants and said the government would be providing "guidelines" for how they should "prepare themselves."
"The women and young girls have to be more protected in the future so these things don’t happen again," she said. "This means, they should go out and have fun, but they need to be better prepared, especially with the Cologne carnival coming up. For this, we will publish online guidelines that these young women can read through to prepare themselves."
InfoWars reports that the appalling Cologne assaults were not the only New Year's Eve "celebration" by unruly immigrants in Europe. "Asylum seekers in Sweden also decided to celebrate the new year by sexually molesting women in the town of Kalmar," writes InfoWars' Paul Joseph Watson.
As The Daily Wire has reported, the "generous" immigration policies of Europe—particularly Germany, Sweden, Norway, and other wealthy nations—have been put to the test as of late. One of the most disturbing trends in recent years is the rise of rape cases in Europe. The situation has grown so dire in Norway, that the government felt it necessary to implement a new immigration training program that teaches Muslim immigrants that rape is against the law.
Image (AP): Middle Eastern migrants march through Croatia seeking asylum in Europe.