Nach Mass brawls in the clan milieu in Essen and Castrop-Rauxel, the police are taking a hard line in both cities in the Ruhr area. Larger groups of people attacked each other on Thursday in Castrop-Rauxel, and on Friday evening there was a violent clash between two large enemy groups in Essen, just 30 kilometers away. There are hundreds of people involved. There were injuries, and a large number of cutting and thrusting weapons were secured. Police increased their presence in both cities. NRW Interior Minister Herbert Reul (CDU) now wants to take action.
“It is unacceptable when hordes of men band together and sometimes even arm themselves to intimidate or attack others,” Reul told the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung. Once again, the police must make it clear: “We have state law and not family law,” said Reul. You will keep an eye on the scene and continue to intervene consistently. A dispute among extended families is suspected to be the trigger for the recent confrontations. Essen has been a hotspot of the clan scene for years.
The situation on Sunday night remained calm
The situation remained calm on Sunday night, said police spokesmen in Essen and Recklinghausen on Sunday. The investigators are checking whether there is a connection between the riots in the two cities in the Ruhr area.
Several people, including two police officers, were injured in mass brawls in Essen late Friday evening in the city center. The Essen police said there were violent clashes between larger groups of Syrian and Lebanese nationals “at different locations”. The police intervened with strong forces, supported by a helicopter and service dogs. Several people were taken to hospitals. The identities of more than a hundred people have been established. Baseball bats, roof battens and knives were seized.
A police spokeswoman spoke of several hundred people in the area of the confrontation. The situation was “very dynamic” and was not just limited to one square, but shifted to the inner city area. There were also uninvolved night owls on the go.
The police have been “visibly on the move in the city area with a large number of emergency services” since Friday evening. Larger groups of people were repeatedly found and checked in different places on Saturday. Knives and striking tools were seized. According to a police spokesman, groups were still out and about in Castrop-Rauxel on Saturday. It was quiet at night. The increased presence of the police will continue.
Quarrels among children could have been the trigger
Those involved in Castrop-Rauxel are said to have known each other, and some were neighbors in an apartment building. According to a report in the “Bild” newspaper, the trigger for the confrontation between the two extended families is said to have been a dispute between children.
In both cities, the police increased their presence and reconnaissance efforts to prevent further confrontations. This has already had an effect in Castrop-Rauxel. There the police broke up a gathering of more than 100 people early on Friday evening with a large-scale operation, without violence erupting. The police had previously received information from local residents. Knives, machetes and a firearm were seized during the searches. On Sunday, the police set up an information portal where witnesses can anonymously post video files.
Two groups attacked each other in Castrop-Rauxel on Thursday evening. At least seven people were injured, some seriously. A homicide squad was formed. The first incident involving around 20 people had already occurred in Castrop-Rauxel on Tuesday.
For several years, the police in North Rhine-Westphalia have been taking targeted action against criminal family clans. In April 2022, the fourth situation report on clan crime was presented. After that, the statistically recorded clan crime in North Rhine-Westphalia declined. The Ruhr area is still considered the main area of action for the clan criminals. Most crimes were recorded in Essen in 2021, followed by Recklinghausen, Gelsenkirchen, Duisburg and Bochum.