Cologne may be dealing with migrant rape game of the type that targeted CBS’s Lara Logan

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A large group of Arab men accused of sexually assaulting hundreds of women in Cologne, Germany on New Year’s Eve were playing a “rape game” that is widely known in Arab countries, German officials suspect.

Protesters take to Cologne streets in wake of New Year's Eve sex assaults. /Reuters
Protesters take to Cologne streets in wake of New Year’s Eve sex assaults. /Reuters

The “game,” known in Arab countries as “taharush,” is orchestrated at large events by large numbers of men who surround their intended victim while others prevent witnesses from intervening. In many instances, the “game” ends with full-on rape of the woman or mugging.

Authorities say the “game” is held during large-scale demonstrations or celebrations so the perpetrators can easily disappear into the crowd and avoid identification.

The “game” first became widely reported in 2011 when CBS News journalist Lara Logan was brutally assaulted by a mob of men in Cairo’s Tahrir square on the day Egyptian ruler Hosni Mubarak stepped down from power.

According to CBS, Logan and her team were surrounded by a mob and she became separated from her crew. After a sustained sexual assault and beating by the mob of men, Logan was rescued by a group of women who intervened, along with Egyptian soldiers who finally arrived on the scene.

The attacks in Cologne have fueled anger over Chancellor Angela Merkel’s open-door refugee policy and her insistence that Germany has a handle on the 1.1 million migrants who arrived in the country last year, most of them single young men.

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