Police and politicians in the German region that includes Cologne have been so scared to talk about North African migrant crime that is has effectively been a “state secret”, a prominent German newspaper has reported.
Die Welt says that crime committed by North African migrants has been especially high for years in the North Rhine-Westphalia region, but politicians have rarely spoken out on the issue.
The region includes the city of Cologne which witnessed the worst of the New Year’s Eve sex assaults three weeks ago, resulting in over 600 criminal complaints being filed so far.
Under the sub-heading “They steal, drink, harass women. For fear of fanning xenophobia, police and politicians kept silent for years on the problem of violent migrants from North Africa. Until now”, the paper exposes how political correctness has previously prevented political debate on the issue.
Last Monday, the Interior Committee of the regional parliament debated the Cologne attacks for the first time, and Lothar Hegemann, the region’s longest serving MP, called it a turning point:
“For the first time in years we can speak about crimes committed by foreigners without being called liars,” he said.
Die Welt says that a “culture of silence” grew up over the crime wave, but that silence has now ended.
Last week, the region’s Interior Minister Ralf Jäger said the perpetrators of the Cologne assaults were “almost exclusively migrants”, while police chief Dieter Schürmann said “North African-Arab men” tore the clothes from women’s bodies and “penetrated” them.
A few years ago, when one MP tried to raise the problem of immigrant violence, left-wingers from the Social Democrats, Greens and even the Pirate Party laughed at the idea. Now the Social Democrats are warning of “a highly problematic group of recently arrived immigrants from Morocco and Algeria”.
Breitbart London reported this weekend how one of Germany’s leading feminists had also criticised the silence. Alice Schwarzer said she had long known of the problem, but few felt able to speak out:
“20 years ago, a Cologne police officer said to me: ‘Alice, 70 to 80 percent of all rapes in Cologne go to the account of Turks.’ I was shocked and replied: ‘You absolutely must make it public! Even a Turk is not born as a rapist. There must be causes. What’s going on here? What can we do?’
“But the message was clear: ‘No way, that’s not politically opportune’. And it is this kind of political correctness that conceals the circumstances.”