VIDEO: This is what Puigdemont did when presented with a Spanish flag in Denmark

The deposed president who has been in self-imposed exile in Belgium since October was on a visit with to the Danish capital when he was approached by a man with a Spanish flag.

VIDEO: This is what Puigdemont did when presented with a Spanish flag in Denmark
Archive photo of Puigdemont walking past a Spanish flag in Belgium. Photo: AFP

The young man, reportedly a Spaniard named Victor Moreno who works in Copenhagen as a hairdresser, approached Carles Puigdemont as he was breakfasting at a shopping centre café.

Thrusting the Spanish flag towards the Catalan leader he said: “How do you like it?”

Goodnaturedly, a smiling Puigdemont said he had “no problem” with the flag and when invited to give it a kiss, he did. Twice.

The man, who filmed the encounter on his mobile phone and then approached La Vanguardia newspaper to publish the clip, ended the meeting with the retort: “A Spanish jail is waiting for you”.

Puigdemont later republished the clip from his Twitter account explaining:

“Some day they’ll understand that the problem is not with Spain or with the flag. The battle is against those who exercise power despotically. Democracy is more important than all borders, all flags and all constitutions.”

Puigdemont arrived in Denmark on Monday morning to take part in a debate on Catalonia at the University of Copenhagen and to meet with Danish politicians to discuss the issue. 

READ ALSO: Meeting with Puigdemont is not an endorsement insists Danish politician

He has been in Belgium since October after he was sacked by Madrid and his government suspended following a unilateral declaration of independence in the wake of an illegal referendum.

Puigdemont faces arrest if he returns to Spain, where he is charged with rebellion, sedition and misuse of public funds over his role in Catalonia's independence drive.

READ MORE: Spain on alert in case Puigdemont sneaks home in car boot


Denmark’s Dannebrog flag ‘fell from sky’ 800 years ago today

It was 800 years ago this Saturday that a banner sporting a white cross fell miraculously from the sky as Danish crusaders were losing a fierce battle against pagan Estonian tribes.

Denmark's Dannebrog flag 'fell from sky' 800 years ago today
Denmark's Dannebrog flag fell from the sky as Valdemar I (centre with sword) was losing a battle against Estonian flags in 1219. Photo: Christian August Lorentzen/Statens Museum for Kunst
When Denmark's King Valdemar I seized the banner and held it high, his troops were filled with renewed valour and went on to vanquish the Estonian defenders.
This helped them establish Danish Estonia around the fortress of Taani-linn, or Tallinn, which literally means “Danish castle”. 
This story of the 'Dannebrog', Denmark's beloved national flag, may not be fully backed up by the historical evidence.
But as Torben Kjersgaard Nielsen, Associate Professor in Medieval History at Aalborg University, points out, that's hardly the point. 
“We don't talk about whether it's true or not,” Kjersgaard Nielsen, author of the book Dannebrog, told Denmark's Ritzau newswire.”We talk about whether it's a good story, and that it brings a mystical and divine element.” 
As part of the celebrations on Saturday, a parachutist recreated the historic scene, bringing a Dannebrog slowly to the ground. 
The Dannebrog being brought once again from the sky on Saturday. Photo: Keld Navntoft / Ritzau Scanpix 
Denmark's Queen Margrethe II is sailing to Estonia on the royal yacht 'Dannebrog', where she will take part in joint celebrations over the founding of Tallinn, which also shares its 800th anniversary on Saturday. 
Queen Margrethe will sail to Tallinn on the Dannebrog yacht. Photo: Keld Navntoft / Ritzau Scanpix 
The flag began as a royal symbol and trading banner, then became regimental flag in the Danish army in the 18th Century. It only started to be seen as representing the entire nation in the first half of the 19th century. 
Kjersgaard Nielsen said that Danes' use of the flag for birthdays and other celebrations was mostly about creating a sense of occasion. 
“We are not thinking especially nationalistically when we put the birthday flag in a home-made cake or when young people come back from a backpacking holiday,” he said. 
“But we probably are thinking politically when we for example see political parties using the flag as part of their communications.”  
Back in 2016, there was a dispute over politicisation of the symbol when Pia Kjærsgaard, the Speaker of Denmark's parliament, who represents the Danish People's Party, wanted to have a three-meter Dannebrog hung behind her chair. 
Christian Juhl, from the Red Green Alliance, complained that this was “close to an abuse of power by the Speaker”, and succeeded in having the size of the flag dramatically reduced.