Carnival season is getting under way in Germany. In Cologne, even immigrants love to join the fun.
People in Germany's Rhineland have kicked off what is sometimes known as the fifth season of the year. Carnival, which runs until mid-February, is marked by much merrymaking and foolishness.
Following a recent demonstration in Cologne of "Hooligans against Salafists" that escalated out of control, authorities have banned a similar anti-Islamist rally planned for this Saturday in the western city of Hanover.
Borussia Mönchengladbach will take on Cologne this Sunday in the Rhine region's most celebrated Bundesliga derby. For both sets of supporters, it's arguably the most important game of the year.
Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki has taken over the Cologne archdiocese, one of the richest in the world. He is determined to spread Pope Francis' message of charity and the importance of sharing.
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