In the aftermath of the violent assaults on women on New Year’s Eve in Cologne, Europe appears to be on high alert for sexual predators of foreign appearance.
Several European countries have been warning their citizens about keeping would-be assailants at “arm’s-length” as they do not wish to create a public image of refugees and migrants as potential rapists.
Indicative of this approach is the infamous case of the 17-year-old Danish girl who faced a fine from police after she allegedly used “illegal” pepper spray to deter an attacker.
As growing evidence that government authorities in Europe are suggesting that citizens “should adapt to threats rather than compelling authorities to protect citizens,” police in Östersund, an urban area in the middle of Sweden, have asked women not to go out unaccompanied at night.
The statement was made by police authorities during a press conference on Monday.
“Women in a town in northern Sweden have been warned not to walk alone at night in the wake of a spike in violent assaults and attempted rapes,” The Daily Mail writes. “Police in Östersund made the unusual move to ask women not to go out unaccompanied after dark, after reports of eight brutal attacks, some by ‘men of foreign appearance’, in just over two weeks.” There is more:
It is extremely unusual for Swedish authorities to make such warnings, and it has not been well received in Sweden, a country proud of its progress in gender equality and women’s rights.
All incidents have taken place in Östersund since the 20th of February, and involved outdoor attacks where the perpetrators have been unknown to their female victims.
A police spokesperson added that in addition to the increased frequency, the attacks are also conspicuous as — despite being carried out late at night — none of the perpetrators were drunk.
“What stands out is also that none of these perpetrators have been under the influence,” regional police chief Stephen Jerand told Sveriges Television.
Needless to say, Swedes did not take kindly to the idea that women should stay off the streets at night. Sweden is a nation with a long tradition of gender equality.
Here are some reactions as reported in The Local, Sweden’s news in English.”
“The solution can never be to not go out because of such a warning. We have very many women who work in home and social care at night for example. What are they supposed to do?” the city’s mayor Ann-Sofie Andersson told Swedish broadcaster SVT.
The politician, who represents the government’s Social Democrat party at a regional level, said she wished police had told her about their intentions before issuing the warning.
“It’s wrong if it calls on women to adapt to the criminals. It risks leading people the wrong way, if the victims must adapt to the perpetrators,” he said.
Police authorities reacted in turn by saying that their warning was taken out of context.
“We are not limiting anyone’s freedom. This is purely factual information,” the police chief told the TT news agency. “This is serious, we care about the protection of women and that is why we are going out and talking about this.”
So, there you have it. Europe is now on high alert for both terrorists and sexual predators.
Indeed, as many have been saying all along, the refugee story isn’t going to end well either for Europe or for the refugees themselves.
(Sources: The Daily Mail; Zero Hedge)