EU Internal Policy

Police BAN anti-migrant rallies in Cologne over NYE sex attacks for ‘security reasons’

GERMAN police have banned the anti-migrant Alternativ fur Deutschland (AfD) and National Democratic Party of Germany (NPD) from demonstrations on New Year’s Eve in Cologne over the horrific sex attacks last year.

German policeGETTY

German police have banned anti-migrant rallies

The police have prohibited rallies from both parties in the German city and the administrative court supported the decision to stop the NPD on Thursday.

Police president Jurgen Mathies has said that he has called the ban because of “security reasons”.

Last year, mobs of mostly North African men sexually assaulted and robbed hundreds of women in and around the city’s main railway station.

Victims filed 1,222 criminal complaints, including 513 for sexual assault.

Cologne train stationGETTY

Many of the sex attacks happened close to the Cologne train station

We have had a difficult year behind us, and a great challenge lies ahead

Cologne police president

On December 11 a truck ploughed into a Berlin Christmas market killing 12 people and injuring 56 increasing fear that a similar attack could be planned for Cologne.The chairman of the police said an AfD protest with 10 to 15 participants was  a ”verifiable and already noticeable danger for the participants and the uninvolved”.

Police officers in Cologne GETTY

Hundreds more police officers will be deployed for this New Year’s Eve

Around 1,500 police officers will be deployed for New Year’s Eve and concrete barriers will also be set up.The assaults sparked public outrage with many people criticising Cologne police for being underprepared and slow to respond to the chaos.

The attacks also increased anti-migrant feeling, particularly within far-right parties.

Mr Mathies said: “We have had a difficult year behind us, and a great challenge lies ahead.“The terror attack in Berlin has made it clear to us all that a real danger exists.”

The police chief said that they will be carrying machine guns on New Year’s Eve and truck barriers will be erected where large groups gather to watch fireworks.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has faced a backlash for the lenient migrant policies since she has allowed more than one million migrants into the country.

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