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Danes' support of EU skyrockets after Brexit

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Danes' support of EU skyrockets after Brexit
People hold up pro-Europe placards as thousands of protesters take part in a March for Europe, through the centre of London on Saturday. Photo: NIKLAS HALLE'N/AFP/Scanpix
13:54 CEST+02:00
The results of two polls show that Danes are much more interested in remaining in the EU than they were before the UK voted to leave on June 23rd.
The two polls – one taken before Brexit and one in its aftermath – reveal a sharp drop in the number of Danes interested in having their own referendum and a significant increase in the number of people who want to remain in the EU. 
 
When pollster Voxmeter asked Danes before the UK vote if they thought Denmark should hold its own referendum on EU membership, 40.7 percent said yes. After Brexit become a reality, that number plunged to just 32 percent. 
 
Likewise, the number of Danes who want to remain in the EU went from 59.8 percent before the referendum to a full 69 percent afterward.
 
 
Derek Beach is a professor at Aarhus University and a leading expert on Danes' opinions on the EU. He told news agency Ritzau that Brexit drove home the reality of what a vote to leave the union would mean for Denmark. 
 
“We can see a country that we know well make the decision. Then the Danes think ‘we definitely don't want that'. The overall opinion is that we are happy enough with what we have,” he said.
 
Jan E. Jørgensen, a spokesman for the ruling Venstre party, said he was happy to see the difference in the poll results.
 
“This shows that when you can see that this is for real, and the consequences that come with leaving the EU, then the support [for the EU] becomes greater. It's not because the people think the EU is perfect. We don't think that either,” he told Ritzau. 
 
Following the UK voters' decision to leave the EU, Danish PM Lars Løkke Rasmussen has said he has no plans to hold a referendum on Denmark's EU membership.
 
The Brexit vote has sent global financial markets into meltdown, caused the UK Prime Minister David Cameron to resign and exposed huge fractures in the British political landscape, which show no signs of being resolved anytime soon. 'Leave' campaigner Boris Johnson also abandoned ship, deciding to not compete in the Conservative Party leadership race, while Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party (UKip), stepped down on Monday, saying he "needed his life back".
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