German officials have announced that about 1,000 young men, many of them drunk, were involved in a coordinated attack against at least 90 women in Cologne on New Year’s Eve. The women were harassed, molested, raped, and robbed by the men in an assault authorities described as “unprecedented” in both scale and nature. Police Chief Wolfgang Albers said it was “a completely new dimension of crime,” adding that a volunteer policewoman was one of the victims. The assault went unreported for days in most cases. Cologne police described the majority of attackers as young men “who appeared to have a North African or Arabic” background. That description was reportedly based on testimony from victims and witnesses and has resulted in a national outcry.
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