Germany strikes back against sex assaults -- with leaflets

From MailOnline

By Amie Gordon

German authorities have resorted to issuing cartoon leaflets in public swimming pools in an attempt to stop gangs of migrants groping women.

In the wake of the sex assaults in Cologne on New Year's Eve and a wave of reported cases of sexual harassment in swimming baths, officials have now created a special cartoon guide on appropriate etiquette.

The illustrations feature German captions with subtitles in English and Arabic and warn migrants not to wear underwear instead of swimming trunks, harass women, or push them in the water. 

One cartoon shows a hand attempting to grope a woman wearing a bikini and bears the universal red 'no' symbol demonstrating such behaviour is forbidden

Some 20,000 leaflets in seven languages have been issued across refugee facilities and public pools and a second edition is already in the pipeline.

A spokesman for Munich public services said the leaflets contained bathing rules and 'intercultural subjects', developed in cooperation with the equality office, the anti-discrimination office and the Centre for Intercultural Cooperation of the City of Munich.

A spokesman added: 'We had a number of incidents in swimming pools with migrants who could not swim and do not understand our language, written warnings, bans or instructions.

'The principle of acceptance of women – no matter what clothes they’re wearing – was not be respected by all visitors, hence the explicit indication.

'The multilingual information helps the staff communicate and is helping them in prevention work.'

This comes after migrants were banned from a historic swimming bath in Germany after a gang of men were caught on camera masturbating in a hot tub and sexually assaulting women.

Several other men were seen 'emptying their bowels' in the children's end of the main swimming pool at the Johannisbad baths in Zwickau, Saxony.

Management at the historic baths are reportedly no longer allowing migrants into the facilities following the allegations while some local swimmers have stayed away after the incidents. 

In response to growing concerns, a leisure centre in Bornheim, North Rhine-Westphalia, became the first in Germany to ban migrants after a schoolgirl was sexually assaulted in a public swimming pool by Syrian teenagers.

Three Syrian boys were arrested in January over the attack at a leisure centre in Munich as the country grapples with growing concerns about sex crimes perpetrated by asylum seekers. 

The ban also follows an attack by an 18-year-old refugee on a 54-year-old woman in Bornheim, where he had groped and tried to kiss her.

In Sweden, police have resorted to sending undercover officers to Stockholm's swimming pools amid a rising number of sex assaults on girls by migrants.

Plain clothes police will monitor swimming baths in the Swedish capital after 'a few dozen' suspected cases of sexual harassment were reported mainly by parents of teenage girls.

It comes amid reports that a number of girls said they had been sexually assaulted by young male asylum seekers at the city's Eriksdalsbadet Olympic baths in recent weeks

The four cases involve girls under the age of 18 and all sexual assaults have taken place in hot tubs, pools or in the changing rooms.

The baths have started segregated whirlpool bathing after an increase in reports by girls and women that they had been groped underwater. 

Meanwhile Switzerland has also adopted a similar Austrian cartoon flyer for its upcoming Lucerne carnival which authorities are issuing to migrants.

The pictogram clearly demonstrates accepted behavior such as kissing and praying, while making it clear what is frowned upon in society. 

The Health and Social Services Department has issued the cartoon flyer, dubbed 'Ground Rules' and will distribute it to migrants ahead of the hugely popular Swiss carnival, which takes place from February 4-9.

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