Vienna, Austria: Police Arrest 9 Iraqi Men Accused of Raping Tourist on New Year's Day

Vienna, Austria: Police Arrest Nine Iraqi Men Accused of Raping Tourist on New Year’s Day

Nine Iraqi men were arrested on suspicion of raping a German tourist in Austria, police said Monday.

The incident happened in Vienna on New Year’s Day, when the men are accused of taking the woman from a downtown neighborhood to an apartment where two of them lived, and she was attacked there.

Vienna police spokesman Paul Eidenberger told the Associated Press that the woman had been drinking and suspects she was drugged and does not remember going to the apartment.

He said the suspects who were arrested are ages 21 to 47 and are either asylum seekers or were recently granted asylum. He said they deny the rape allegations.

In neighboring Germany, more than 100 women reported being sexually assaulted and robbed on New Year’s Eve in the western city of Cologne. Criminal proceedings began against 50 people, several of them asylum seekers.

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That incident was seized on by opponents of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision to welcome nearly 1.1 million refugees to Germany last year.

Figures from the Pew Research Center showed about 1.3 million people sought asylum in Europe in 2015, many of them fleeing conflict in countries including Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.

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