I’ve reported previously on violence directed at the Pro-Köln (Pro-Cologne) movement, which was organized to oppose the building of a large mosque in the city of Cologne. Pro-Köln has joined forces with Cities Against Islamization to hold an Anti-Islamization Congress in Cologne tomorrow. Around 1,500 anti-jihad activists are expected to attend, but indications are that there will be tens of thousands of “anti-racist” demonstrators present to confront them. The Cologne police are preparing for the possibility of violence.
However, violence has struck again in advance of the event, this time directed against a press conference held on board a ship on the Rhine. Our Flemish correspondent VH has translated today’s report of the incident published on the Pro-Köln website:
Violence against persons and property
While the press conference of the citizens’ movement Pro NRW [North Rhine-Westphalia] in Leverkusen-Wiesdorf passed without disturbance, the press conference [on the Anti-Islamization Conference] held by the citizens’ movement on a ship on the Rhine was massively attacked by Leftist extremists.
During this attack, the self-proclaimed “antifascists” beat up the 45-year-old German-Jewish member of the Federal Executive Board of the citizens’ movement Pro Deutschland, Michael Kucherov, in the district town hall of Rodenkirchen.
Kucherov was completely stunned that he became the target of such massive violence simply because he wanted to join the press conference together with members of the Pro-Köln movement. An anti-Semitic motivation for the attack was not evident, however.
The Rhine vessel on which the press conference took place with nearly thirty journalists from half of Europe was damaged severely by stones thrown by Leftist extremists, and is no longer seaworthy. It must be towed to a port, but is currently in the control of the police so they can catch the Leftists bent on violence who want to chase the ship.
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The managing director of the Pro-Köln Group Council, the Cologne board member Manfred Rouhs, comments on the incident:
“In Leverkusen, where we as a large group of about a hundred members and supporters of the citizens’ movement were protected by the police, there was no violence by the leftist extremists. These people apparently prefer to take on individuals with their large groups. However, it also means that the safest place in Cologne is the Heumarket on Saturday. Because around 1,000 to 1,500 of our supporters will gather there, and the police will show their strength at that location.”
The assault on Michael Kucherov is cowardly and contradicts the claim of the Left to be an “anti-fascist” coalition, ad absurdum. The journalists who witnessed the press conference have today been able to see for themselves from which side the violence originates.
Maybe this experience will give journalists a reason for some deep thought. More extensive reporting might show the potentially violent offenders that the reporters are in no way the executioners of a silent majority, but are able to put themselves and their own private political preferences to one side.
VH adds his somewhat abridged translation of this article from the Cologne website:
Although the location of the press conference was kept quiet, leftists did find out about it. When the invited guests boarded the ship, stones, bricks and paint-bombs where thrown at them and the panoramic windows of the Moby Dick were shattered. The Captain of the Rhine vessel Moby Dick decided to disembark immediately because of the attacks by the leftist extremists. Therefore some journalists could not board in time.
The ship was escorted by two police boats to a location where the guests could disembark safely and the planned trip to the site of the planned Grand Mosque [Ehrenfeld] had to be abandoned. Some protesters were arrested.
A few hundred protesters had gathered on the site of the Mosque to await the ship. Amongst them was the SDP [Social Democrat] District Mayor of Ehrenfeld, Josef Wirges, who spoke to them with a megaphone: “Ehrenfeld is colorful instead of brown. We cannot use anyone here to instigate hate and discrimination.”
The CDU [Christian Democratic Union] Mayor of Cologne Fritz Schramma said: “Such a Congress […] we don’t want and that is what we as a large majority of the citizens of Cologne stand for.”
Despite the violent incidents Pro Köln will proceed with the large rally on Saturday in the old city center of Cologne as planned. “We will not step aside because of violence,” a spokesman said. The Cologne police have already prepared several thousand officers. They expect tens of thousands [some expect at least 40,000] counter-demonstrators [from all over Europe].