[Ed. – The real story here is the respectful coverage AP gives to these protestations — and to the idea that “there is little solid information” on who the perps were. The victims have told the police who the perps were. Suddenly, over 100 female rape victims might have misunderstood what was going on, and who was doing it? If the accused had been a mob of European white men, no white man could get a respectful hearing about anything from the press.]
Police said Wednesday that 121 women have filed criminal complaints for robbery and sexual assault – including two allegations of rape. They said the attackers were among a group of some 1,000 men described as being of “Arab or North African origin” who gathered in front of the Cologne’s main train station and gothic cathedral that night.
Although there is little solid information so far on who committed the assaults, the incident has put a spotlight on Chancellor Angela Merkel’s welcoming stance toward those fleeing conflict, and has been seized on by Germany’s far right, which opposes most forms of immigration.
“It’s really sad what happened,” said one woman wearing a Muslim headscarf, who only gave her last name, Ozap. She rejected the suggestion by some German politicians that the Muslim attitudes toward women might have played a role in the attacks.
“Everywhere it says that this has something to do with Muslims. What I read and learned in the Quran is completely different.
“I’ve been here for 30 years myself and I’ve never seen anything like this,” she added.
Hassan Akdogdu, a 34-year-old businessman and a second-generation Turkish immigrant, agreed. He accused police of not doing enough to prevent the attacks.
“It’s nothing to do with religion,” he said. “Lack of respect for women isn’t a religious problem, as a Muslim I can say that.”