• Denmark's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Refugee crisis
Denmark says no to EU's 160,000 refugee plan
Refugees arrive at Copenhagen Central Station on Thursday. Photo: Linda Kastrup/Scanpix

Denmark says no to EU's 160,000 refugee plan

The Local · 11 Sep 2015, 13:33

Published: 11 Sep 2015 13:33 GMT+02:00

In a move already signalled earlier this week, Denmark has said it will not participate in the EU’s plans to resettle some 160,000 refugees. 
 
Integration Minister Inger Støjberg confirmed on Friday that Denmark will not be involved in the distribution of refugees amongst EU countries, a plan championed by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on Wednesday. 
 
 
“We will not take part in the 160,000 asylum seekers that shall be distributed. We won’t do it because we have an opt-out [on EU Justice and Home Affairs, ed.] and because we are already taking in a great deal now,” Støjberg told Berlingske. 
 
Støjberg said that Denmark’s decision should come as no surprise. 
 
“We have an opt-out – it is very well-known that we won’t participate in the redistribution of these 160,000 so therefore I don’t think this is in any way something dramatic from a Danish viewpoint,” she said. 
 
Speaking to Jyllands-Posten, Støjberg said that she saw “simply no reason” to take some of the asylum seekers since Denmark is already “taking absolutely a very large portion already”. 
 
Denmark received more than 15,000 asylum requests in 2014. In relation to its population size, it was the fifth-biggest recipient in the EU, ahead of Germany, according to Eurostat.
 
According to a memo from the Ministry for Immigration, Integration and Housing obtained by Jyllands-Posten, Denmark could risk exclusion from the EU’s Dublin Regulation on asylum seekers if the nation does not agree to the redistribution plan. Støjberg however said she didn’t think the plan that Juncker put forth on Wednesday will be approved in its current form. 
 
“If the proposal from the commission is implemented from one end to the other as it looks right now, then it is correct that we sooner or later will face a decision [on Denmark’s continued participation in the Dublin Regulation, ed.]. But I think it would be the first time in Europe’s history that such a major proposal would be but implemented from one end to the other,” she told Berlingske. 
 
The integration minister stressed that Denmark strongly prefers to remain part of the regulation, which which states that the first EU nation to register an asylum seeker must process the claimant’s application. 
 
Story continues below…
Denmark is part of the Dublin rules despite its opt-out because it entered a so-called parallel agreement with the EU. According to the parallel agreement, Denmark will have to inform the EU if it intends to go along with changes to the regulation. If Danish officials don’t clarify the country’s stance within a given time period, Denmark’s parallel agreement is considered annulled. 
 
Experts have warned that if Denmark does not go along with the EU plan and thus ends up excluded from the Dublin Regulation, the nation would become a prime destination for asylum seekers and human smugglers because Denmark would no longer have the option of sending people back to another European country. 
 
Denmark's opt-out on EU Justice and Home Affairs makes the Nordic nation exempt from having to participate in a shared European approach to the current refugee crisis, even though joining a EU-wide solution could result in Denmark taking in fewer refugees than it does now. 
 
Denmark will hold a referendum on ending its opt-out on December 3rd, but the new proposed ‘opt-in’ model would have no bearing on Denmark’s asylum and immigration policies. 

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

Today's headlines
When the Village Vanguard came to Denmark
Dexter Gordon was one of several US jazz musicians to settle in Denmark. Photo: Tom Marcello/Flickr

A tale of migration and jazz in 1960s Copenhagen.

Roskilde Festival 2016
The Local's not-quite-live Roskilde 2016 blog
Tenacious D with Jack Black, Kyle Gass and Satan himself closed the Orange stage on Thursday night. Photo: Nils Meilvang/Scanpix 2016

We're posting updates all week as a field in Roskilde is temporarily turned in to the fourth largest city in Denmark.

Experience Denmark the Danish way – by bike
Denmark's small size and beautiful nature make it ideal for a cycling holiday. Photo: Niclas Jessen/VisitDenmark

The combination of exercise, culture and nature compressed into a small area makes Denmark the ideal place for a cycling holiday.

Danish police use infamous 'jewellery law' for first time
File photo of volunteers awaiting arriving migrants at Copenhagen Central Station. Photo: Nils Meilvang/Scanpix

UPDATED: A total of 79,600 kroner was seized from five Iranian nationals.

Opinion
Stop trashing your city, Copenhagen residents!
This is not a garbage can! Photo: Louis Volpe

Denmark and its capital have a lot to be proud of, but the way residents treat the entire city like a rubbish bin is not one of them, writes American expat Louis Volpe.

Danish bankers eye Brexit cash-in
File photo: Vladimir Wrangel/Iris/Scanpix

Experts in the Danish finance industry have called for changes to tax laws so that Denmark can take advantage of a potential banking exodus from London following last week's Brexit vote.

Dejlige Days Welcome
Why you should learn Danish (and how it will benefit you)
Learning Danish will open up personal and professional opportunities. Photo: william87/Iris/Scanpix

Relocation expert Melanie Haynes offers up her eight top reasons for why you should at least make an effort to learn the local language.

Danes with foreign spouses to be hit by new restriction
Some 200,000 Danes living abroad could be impacted by the new rule. Photo: Iris

Danes and their foreign spouses will now have a much harder time living in Denmark.

Danish students and caps: What’s all the noise about?
Thousands of young students have taken to the streets of Denmark wearing their caps. Photo: Knud Erik Christensen/Colourbox

During the month of June, Danish towns are overtaken by jubilant young adults wearing assorted styles of graduation caps (studenterhuer). The Local brings you a guide to what the caps mean, their history and significance to the class of 2016.

Photo gallery
Devil horns up! A photo journey through Copenhell
Copenhell was completely sold out for the first time ever. Photo: Philip B. Hansen

The Local joined the headbanging masses at this year's Copenhell heavy metal festival to bring you this devilish photo report.

Sponsored Article
VIDEO: Why Malmö is the world's 6th best city for biking
International
After Brexit, Danish PM resists calls for similar EU referendum
International
Why Denmark won't try to follow the UK out of the EU
Copenhagen police tear down Christiania cannabis market
National
Copenhagen police tear down Christiania cannabis market
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Danish PM: Orlando shooting act of 'hatred'
International
Danish PM: Orlando shooting act of 'hatred'
Society
Sex campaigns lead to Danish baby boom
National
Don't worry Denmark, the world still loves you
Culture
Danish diversity ad a massive social media hit – have you seen it?
National
Denmark scraps green card but spares current holders
Denmark takes historic step for transgender rights
Society
Denmark takes historic step for transgender rights
Denmark to impose new 'integration' rules on kids
National
Denmark to impose new 'integration' rules on kids
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Green card holders in Denmark in race against time
National
Green card holders in Denmark in race against time
How Copenhagen achieved an ‘organic food revolution’
National
How Copenhagen achieved an ‘organic food revolution’
Travel
The second best destination in all of Europe is...
Sport
We are the champions! Denmark wins world badminton team title
After 100 years, British WW1 sailor identified in Denmark
National
After 100 years, British WW1 sailor identified in Denmark
Society
Strangest political story in Denmark just got stranger
International
Keeping Denmark in Europol 'maybe impossible'
Analysis & Opinion
Green card holders tell Denmark to keep its promise
National
Denmark picks F-35 in historic jet purchase
Society
Denmark to no longer define transgender as mental illness
National
Danish minister tells 'Sharia' troublemakers to 'get a job'
Culture
Danish 'martyr' exhibit reported to police
2,283
jobs available