The annual Children’s Carnival in the German city of Wanne-Eickel, North Ruhr, has been cancelled after the venue received a letter containing “anti-German messages in Arabic and German,” Der Westen newspaper has reported.
Although the exact content of the letter were not released, it caused enough “fear and concern” that the organizers decided to call off the carnival, now in its eighteenth year, spokesman Rüdiger Pfeifer said.
The letter, sent to the carnival’s venue, the Volkshaus Röhlinghausen, contained a number of newspaper clippings annotated with comments, including, Der Westen said, the word “infidels” scrawled next to a report of local Christmas carol singers.
Elsewhere in the letter it said that “Germany kills all Muslims,” in reference, Pfeifer said, to the flights which have recently started by the German air force in Syria.
According to Der Westen, the carnival’s sponsoring organization called the police, and after consulting with local parents, decided to cancel.
“That seemed the right thing to do,” an employee said, adding that there were “good reasons” to assume that the letter had come from a Salafist sect—an ultra-conservative movement within Sunni Islam—and that the Volkshaus Röhlinghausen did not want to expose the children to any unnecessary risks.
The existence of the letter was at first kept secret, and a press release from the Volkshaus Röhlinghausen only said that it had been canceled “for organizational reasons.”
It was only later, when Der Westen was informed of the existence of the letter, that the organizers confirmed its existence and admitted the truth.
The carnival party has been sold out every year of its existence, and usually features around 250 children, dressed up for the most part, who take part in a procession. There are also street performances, parades, clowns, and the usual merriment for which German carnivals, a tradition dating from medieval times, are famed.
Part of the 2015 Children’s Carnival in Wanne-Eickel.
“It is very regrettable that it has had to be cancelled,” Pfeifer said. “It makes me very sad and very angry.”
Local police spokesman Marco Bischoff confirmed that they were investigating the letter’s origins and that they were taking it “very seriously.”
Earlier this month, the German town of Rheinberg, near Cologne, announced that it was cancelling its annual carnival over fears of Cologne-style sex assaults on women.
In a statement, the organizers said that it “cannot rule out’ the possibility of drunken refugees coming into town to prey on women.”
Rheinberg has at least 600 nonwhite invaders in its local “asylum camp” and the city said in a statement it believed a “problematic audience” would turn up “who had chosen the parade because they think it will not be so closely controlled by police and security personnel.”
The city had, said Paul van Holt, head of the organizing committee, “run out of time to develop a new security plan in the wake of what happened in Cologne. We would’ve needed half a year to come up with a new security plan,’ he added.
Other cities such as Cologne have announced that they will be proceeding with their carnivals, although a larger than normal police presence is expected to try and prevent the mass sex attacks by nonwhite invaders as happened over the New Year.