As Germany’s fourth city prepares to field a massive police deployment over the New Year’s weekend following the migrant rape crisis of 2015, it is revealed many of those hired to assist the police were newly arrived migrants themselves.
While just 80 on-duty police were struggling to deal with hundreds of violent migrants terrorising party-goers in central Cologne, they found themselves being backed up by untrained migrants hired as security officers. A new report states those migrant helpers had been directly recruited from immigration camps and their only qualifications were owning warm clothes and having a “mediocre” command of the German language.
Germany’s Welt reports 59 new arrivals were hired to work security for the city to supplement the small number of police. The guards were tasked with mundane public protection roles like controlling the flow of revelers celebrating New Year’s Eve across the city bridges, but many disappeared during their shifts and one was found too drunk to work.
The men recruited were predominantly new arrivals from places including North Africa, Syria, and Afghanistan. While the migrant watchmen were paid under the national minimum wage at €5 an hour, the Cologne government was invoiced €15 an hour by the staffing agency.
The city has defended its use of the company, remarking in the past their relationship with them had been “basically unproblematic”.
The revelation comes as the city gears up for what may be one of its largest police operations ever, and as the chief of the city force has vowed all citizens going into the city to celebrate this coming weekend will be totally safe. Police are to erect a tall fence around the central station and Cathedral area with checkpoints controlling those who enter and leave.
Police are also expected to use floodlights in this “protection zone” and deploy helicopters. Approximately 1,500 police officers will be on patrol, compared to 80 in 2015 when officers found themselves unable to control the sudden surge in crime around the Cathedral square on New Year’s Eve.
Some 1,300 individuals became victims of robbery, sexual assault, and even rape. While police attempted to arrest troublemakers early in the night, a shortage of officers, patrol cars, and even available prison cells meant many were immediately released back on the street.
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