Europe

Report: Authorities could have prevented Cologne attacks

German media report that lawmakers believe hundreds of attacks that occurred in Cologne during New Year 2015/16 could have been prevented.

Prosecutors received more than 1,200 criminal complaints, including for over 500 sexual assaults, in the weeks after the attacks.

Police said most of the suspects were of North African origin, prompting a heated debate in Germany about migration.

Cologne daily Express on Friday cited a draft report by state lawmakers that found the attacks could have been "largely prevented" if police had acted more decisively on the night.

Lawmakers reportedly concluded that city officials and police were badly prepared. They also accused authorities of providing the media and public with "false and misleading" information.