• Denmark's news in English

Tensions high ahead of Danish Pegida events

The Local · 19 Jan 2015, 13:23

Published: 19 Jan 2015 13:23 GMT+01:00

Despite rumours to the contrary and the cancellation of the weekly Pegida march in Dresden, the organizer of a Monday Pegida event in Copenhagen vowed that it will go on as planned. 
Nicolai Sennels, the man behind the Copenhagen march, told The Local that “fake press releases, fake Facebook pages etc are spreading false rumours” about the cancellation of his event, which he said is about expressing resistance to a “violent type of Islam” that his group fears is spreading across Europe. 
The cancellation rumours circulated at the same time that death threats from the terrorist group Islamic State (Isis) led Dresden organizers to call off Monday’s Pegida event there
Read more from The Local Germany: Isis threat stops Monday Pegida march
Monday’s events mark the first significant Pegida presence in Denmark. The movement, which stands for Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West, has been drawing tens of thousands of people into the streets of Germany over the past three months, both in support of and opposition to the anti-Islam group. 
There are concerns that Monday’s events in both Copenhagen and Aarhus could potentially turn violent. 
The Copenhagen march will be met by a counter demonstration from the group Revolutionære Antifacister (Revolutionary Anti-Fascists) and the two groups are likely to cross paths. 
Although the Revolutionary Anti-Fascists, like the pro-Pegida group, have promised a peaceful demonstration, a Facebook post from the anti-fascist group encourages participants to “show their resistance” to Pegida supporters. 
“We still encourage all anti-racists, anti-fascists and other comrades to remain in the area or head toward the National Gallery of Denmark and the Little Mermaid after the demonstration is over and show their resistance against Pegida DK in the way you wish to do it,” the post reads. 
A police spokesman told broadcaster DR that there will be a “very visible” police presence at the duelling Copenhagen events. 
“We have put together a large police operation with a large set-up. We will be very visible at the location to ensure that everything goes down peacefully and orderly,” Copenhagen Police inspector Mogens Lauridsen told DR. 
Pegida spokesman Sennels has gone to great pains to say that racists and Nazis are not welcome at the event, but the left-wing research collective Redox reported that “several known people from Neo-Nazi circles” are planning to attend the Pegida march. Sennels told Redox that the Neo-Nazis "are welcome in the demonstration as individuals".

See also: Danish Pegida organizer: No racists allowed
Mogens Camre, a prominent Danish People’s Party politician who has twice faced racism charges for comments made about Muslims, has also announced that he will join the Pegida demonstration. 
Story continues below…
Since the announcement of Monday’s event, many of Sennel’s own anti-Islam writings, which can be read on his website, have come under fire from critics who have accused him of stirring up anti-Muslim sentiment. 
Sennels, a former candidate for the Danish People’s Party, told The Local last week that the Copenhagen march “is not about a political stance or about being on the left or right.”
“There are a lot of completely normal Danish people - school teachers, my mother, etc - who don’t necessarily vote for the right wing but who should be able to voice their aversion to this violent type of Islam,” he said. 
As of Monday afternoon, some 300 people had registered on Facebook to attend Pegida's demonstration against fundamentalist Islam, while around 800 had signed up for the counter-demo. The Pegida march begins at 6pm at the National Gallery of Denmark, while the demonstration against Pegida starts at 5pm at Sankt Hans Torv. 
Read more from The Local Germany: The rise and spread of Pegida

For more news from Denmark, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Today's headlines
Danish MP cleared for 'bomb civilians' remark
Søren Espersen of the Danish People's Party. File photo: Keld Navntoft/Scanpix

Copenhagen Police have dropped proceedings against Danish People’s Party (DF) spokesperson Søren Espersen after he said that Denmark “should start” bombing civilians in Syria.

Denmark's biggest IPO to be windfall for Goldman Sachs
Dong's expected market value is up to 106.5 billion kroner. Photo: Claus Fisker/Scanpix

The Danish wind farm group Dong Energy is valued at up to $16 billion, leading to renewed debate about its partial sale to the US investment bank.

Aarhus blocks plans for grand mosque
Aarhus will not get a new mosque after all. Photo: Guillaume Baviere/Flickr

The sale of a plot of land for the construction of a grand mosque has been cancelled by Aarhus Municipality.

Denmark's waters are cleaner than ever
Danish beaches are cleaner than ever. Photo: Old Dane/ Wikipedia

Jump on in, the water's fine! In fact, it's cleaner than it's ever been.

Syrian refugees sue Denmark over long family wait time
File photo of the refugee tent camp in Thisted. Photo: Sara Gangsted/Scanpix

A group of five Syrians are suing Denmark and Immigration Minister Inger Støjberg over the three-year waiting period for family reunification imposed on refugees.

Green card holders in Denmark in race against time
Green card holder Mehvish Kiran said that her four children would not be able to adjust to life in Pakistan. Photo: Submitted

Thousands of green card holders are desperately trying convince politicians not to force them out of Denmark and say that a recently-granted extension to the scheme is a hollow victory.

Danish economy set for ‘historically’ low growth
File photo: Scanpix DK

Reports from the Ministry of Finance and independent experts suggest that the Danish economy is likely to be one of Europe’s slowest growers over the coming years.

Aarhus named 'second best place in Europe'
Aarhus was named one of the top European destinations of 2016 by the Lonely Planet. Photo: Stan Shebs/Wikimedia

Denmark's second largest city was named among the best European destinations to visit in 2016 by influential travel guide Lonely Planet.

Danish family reunification laws discriminate: court
The court said that Danish rules unfairly discriminate against those who obtain citizenship later in life. Photo: Colourbox

Denmark’s family reunification laws discriminate against those who achieve citizenship later in life, the European Court of Human Rights ruled on Tuesday.

Brit visits Copenhagen on Brexit fact-finding mission
Rebecca Sumner Smith plans to visit the 27 other EU countries before next month's referendum. Photo: Submitted

The Local caught up with British expat Rebecca Sumner Smith when she stopped in the Danish capital as part of her mission to speak to fellow Brits across the EU.

Green card holders in Denmark in race against time
Green card holders in Denmark in race against time
Sponsored Article
Eat, learn, live: unforgettable holidays in France
How Copenhagen achieved an ‘organic food revolution’
How Copenhagen achieved an ‘organic food revolution’
The second best destination in all of Europe is...
We are the champions! Denmark wins world badminton team title
After 100 years, British WW1 sailor identified in Denmark
After 100 years, British WW1 sailor identified in Denmark
Strangest political story in Denmark just got stranger
Keeping Denmark in Europol 'maybe impossible'
Analysis & Opinion
Green card holders tell Denmark to keep its promise
Denmark picks F-35 in historic jet purchase
Denmark to no longer define transgender as mental illness
Danish minister tells 'Sharia' troublemakers to 'get a job'
Danish 'martyr' exhibit reported to police
Denmark extends 'temporary' border measures for sixth time
Denmark nears final decision on controversial fighter jets
Muslim ‘girls only’ swimming sessions ripple Danish waters
Could Danes face a 'red meat tax' to help climate?
Denmark unable to process or issue visas
Denmark to go to war against Isis in Syria
Denmark to go to war against Isis in Syria
Business & Money
How Denmark’s national bank card is about to change
The best Danish bands you've (maybe) never heard of
Danes leaving the church in droves
Atheist campaign gets Danes to leave the church in droves
Four Isis ‘recruits’ arrested in Copenhagen
Four Isis ‘recruits’ arrested in Copenhagen
Business & Money
Unwrapping Denmark's first zero-packaging food store
jobs available