Americans accept Danish offer to help in Iraq

Denmark will send a Hercules transport aircraft to assist those in northern Iraq who have fled the "unbelievably brutal" Islamic State.

Americans accept Danish offer to help in Iraq
Half a million Iraqis have been driven from their homes by jihadist rebels. Photo: Safin Hamed/Scanpix
The United States has accepted Denmark’s offer to assist with its mission in northern Iraq, according to news agency Ritzau. 
Denmark will contribute a Hercules aircraft carrier to the ongoing humanitarian mission in the area, where up to a half a million people have fled the violent forward march of the Islamic State, the terrorist organisation previously known as Isis. 
The exact details of Denmark’s contribution to the meeting are to be discussed by the Foreign Affairs Committee (Udenrigspolitisk Nævn) on Thursday, after which the proposal will be presented to a special assembly of parliament on August 27th. 
Mette Gjerskov, the chairwoman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, said time is of the essence.
“The humanitarian situation in northern Iraq is quite horrible. The behaviour of Islamic State is so unbelievably brutal that I don’t think we are seeing anything like it in the current global context despite the fact that you could say that the world has been in flames over the summer,” she told Ritzau. 
Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt announced last week that Denmark was willing and able to help the US mission in Iraq.
“It is a very serious situation and what Denmark can offer is that we can contribute with military aircraft that can transport emergency humanitarian aid, and we can contribute to making sure that the aid makes its way to those in northern Iraq who are in distress,” she told TV2.
Contributing to the US mission would require parliament’s approval. Thorning-Schmidt said last week that she has spoken to the leaders of the various political parties and received enough backing to secure a majority. 

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Denmark strips dual national of citizenship after terror conviction

A court in Denmark jailed a dual Danish-Turkish national for 10 years on Tuesday and stripped him of his citizenship for "planning a terrorist attack".

Denmark strips dual national of citizenship after terror conviction
The court at Frederiksberg ruled a 24-year-old man must be stripped of his Danish citizenship following a conviction on terrorism charges. Photo: Ólafur Steinar Gestsson/Ritzau Scanpix

The 24-year-old — who was not named by the court — will serve his prison sentence in Denmark, but will then be deported to Turkey upon release, the court in Frederiksberg said in a statement.

The man, a native of Copenhagen, had been under surveillance by the intelligence services and was arrested in April 2020 immediately after purchasing a gun and ammunition. 

The police had found a flag of the Islamic State group in his home. 

Prosecutors had demanded a jail term of 12 years and had charged him with purchasing weapons and ammunition “with the intent of perpetrating one or more terrorist attacks”.

The potential targets were not revealed.

After the man is deported, he will be banned for life from entering Danish territory. 

“I think he’s been in Turkey fewer times than many other Danish people,” his lawyer, Rolf Gregersen, told the court.

“Denmark must take responsibility for him once he was awarded Danish citizenship. They can’t just stick a postage stamp on his back and send him on his way,” the lawyer was quoted by the Danish news agency Ritzau as saying. 

The Danish intelligence services, which have foiled a number of attacks in recent years, categorise the risk of an attack against Denmark as “serious”, six years after an Islamist-motivated double attack in Copenhagen left two people dead.