Cologne Police President Juergen Mathies speaks to media after presenting the security plans for the upcoming carnival season during a news conference in Cologne, Germany February 1, 2016. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay
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As Cologne gears up for its annual carnival, authorities said on Monday they would put more police on duty, light dark areas and use video surveillance to make people feel safe after assaults on women at New Year shocked the nation.Cologne Mayor Henriette Reker said city officials had done everything they could to make people feel secure during the Feb. 4-9 carnival but safety could never be 100 percent guaranteed.More than 2,000 police will be on duty for Weiberfastnacht (women's carnival day) – the first big day of revelry when women often cut off men's ties – around twice as many as last year, and the number of officers on regular duty will be significantly increased, Cologne Police Chief Juergen Mathies told reporters.Police have banned 38 people from entering certain areas of Cologne and nearby Leverkusen, Mathies said.Cologne authorities will light 30 dark areas and close off a square that is too dark to be lit as they spend 478,000 euros ($520,685) more on keeping the city safe and clean than last year, city director Guido Kahlen said.
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