A Danish Facebook campaign to gather enough contributions to post pro-refugee advertisements in national and foreign newspapers has thus far managed to raise 100,000 kroner.
The campaign began as a response to the Danish government’s announced intention to post anti-refugee advertisements in foreign newspapers, in an effort to deter such individuals from coming to Denmark.
The people behind the initiative told Jyllands-Posten that message in the advertisement space will read: “Welcome refugees – No to Støjberg’s deterrence-campaign”.
The ad refers to Inger Støjberg, the Venstre government’s Minister for Integration.
Spokeswoman for the initiative Marianne Rosenkvist said that the money collected so far would be enough to place an ad in the Friday edition of Politiken, one of the country’s largest newspapers, as well as the UK Guardian.
“On the one hand we are surprised about the level of support we have gotten. We hadn’t expected that. On the other hand, I’m actually not surprised that there are many who agree with us and would like to show that other voice that also exists in Denmark,” Rosenkvist told Jyllands-Posten.
“What we would love to accomplish is to see Danish politicians stop making life harder for the refugees coming here, but we also think that it’s important to let people know in Denmark and abroad that many Danes want to stop this de-humanization of refugees,” she added.
Støjberg has come under considerable criticism following her announcement last week that the Venstre government plans to run anti-refugee ads in foreign newspapers.
The minister said last week that she was prepared to run advertisements in foreign newspapers that will contain information aimed at deterring refugees from coming to Denmark.
She made the announcement shortly after Jyllands-Posten revealed the contents of a document that human smugglers use to help asylum seekers compare the different levels of benefits in Europe.
Denmark saw its asylum numbers nearly double in 2014, with 14,815 people arriving in the course of the year compared to 7,557 asylum seekers in 2013. A report from the Danish Immigration Service last month showed that 2015 is on pace to be yet another record year.
Per capita, Denmark took in the sixth highest number of asylum applications in 2014. But due to its opt-out on EU Justice and Home Affairs, it is not participating in the EU plan to redistribute refugees even though this could see Denmark taking in fewer refugees than is currently the case.