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Today in Denmark: A round-up of the latest news on Tuesday

Find out what's going on in Denmark today with The Local's short round-up of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Denmark: A round-up of the latest news on Tuesday
A file photo of Lolland, which had record warm November temperatures on Monday. Photo: Malte Kristiansen/Ritzau Scanpix

Government scraps plan for enforced vegetarian days at workplaces

The government recently said that it wanted to bring in a vegetarian-only menu at state workplace canteens two days per week, to varied reactions of consternation, glee and disappointment. But the scheme will not be rolled out to Danish public workplaces after all, the Ministry of Finance has said in a statement.

After discussing the matter with unions, the government has decided to “let individual state workplaces decide whether or not to have vegetarian days,” finance minister Nicolai Wammen said.

Sikander Siddique, the leader of the recently-formed environmentalist party Independent Greens (Frie Grønne) said in a tweet that it was “disappointing” that the “government’s proposal of meat-free days only lasted five days”.

Far-right party’s request to publish prophet Mohammed cartoons rejected, but they haven’t given up yet

The Nye Borgerlige (New Right) party had mixed fortunes yesterday. A poll suggested they are on course to take over from the Danish People’s Party as the leading far-right group in parliament. Meanwhile, their plan to use ad space in Danish newspapers to publish Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons depicting the prophet Mohammed was set back after cartoonists at the French satirical magazine turned down the request.

“Following consultation with the cartoonists, Charlie Hebdo has not made such an agreement with this political party, with which they do not share any form of viewpoints,” the magazine said to Ekstra Bladet.

It would appear that the Danish political party has not given up on the idea yet.

“When (an agreement to buy rights) falls into place, I think it will be completely and entirely a standard agreement which Charlie Hebdo regularly makes with lots of media all over the world,” Nye Borgelige press spokesperson Lars Kaaber said.

Warmest November day since 1968

Did you go outside in shirt sleeves yesterday? If you did, was it noticeably warm for the time of year?

Mild November weather in the first few days of the month may have peaked with a temperature of 17.7 degrees Celsius recorded on the island of Lolland.

That is the warmest November temperature in Denmark for 52 years, when an even balmier 18.5 degrees Celsius was measured in 1968.

Warm weather, particularly in the south of the country, is related to low pressure fronts between Iceland and Norway, according to the Danish Meteorological Institute.

The next few days are expected to see a drop back into the low teens.

Covid-19 hospitalisations in marked increase

Monday say a further 942 cases of coronavirus registered in Denmark, from a total of 58,871 tests. Those figures are in keeping with the recent higher numbers of cases in the country which have seen the government tighten restrictions on face masks and social gatherings, amongst other things.

READ ALSO: Denmark announces new coronavirus restrictions: Here’s what you need to know

Another daily total stood out on Monday as the number of people admitted to hospital with coronavirus in Denmark shifted upwards from 156 to 174. The increase of 18 means Denmark now has more patients in hospital with Covid-19 than at any time since May 13th.

The number of new hospitalisations each day (before discharged patients are subtracted) is now at around 30, according to news wire Ritzau, having been down to 3-5 daily in August.

A professor in mathematical epidemiology said that although that figure is “relatively high”, it is to be expected given the numbers of new infections.

“There’s nothing in that number [of hospitalisations, ed.] that is alarming (or) on the way to southern European situations,” the professor, Viggo Andreasen, told Ritzau.

Copenhagen Police increase security after Vienna terror attack

Police in Copenhagen have increased alert levels after appalling terror-linked shootings in Vienna on Monday night.

“We have added some preventative security measures to an already-high alert level,” senior police chief Rasmus Agerskov Schultz told Ritzau.

“That (includes)… the closure of Ole Suhrs Gade and Krystalgade [streets in Copenhagen, ed.] where the synagogues are located,” Schultz said.

Gunmen opened fire at multiple locations in the Austrian capital, killing at least three people and wounding several more in what Chancellor Sebastian Kurz described as a “repulsive terror attack”.

Danish vocabulary:

  • Indlæggelse: hospitalisation/hospital admission
  • Lunt: warm or mild (weather)
  • At sløjfe: to scrap or revoke (e.g. a plan, proposal or scheme)

We're trialling a short daily round-up of the news, in addition to our other articles and features about life in Denmark. We would love to know what you think of this article. Is it useful and would you like to see it continue, or would you prefer a weekly round-up, or something else entirely? Please email [email protected] to let us know.

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For members


Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

Eighty-six weekend flights cancelled and a major setback for Copenhagen's artificial peninsula project are among the top headlines in Denmark this Tuesday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

Cancelled flights reflect dire staff shortage 

This past weekend, 86 flights to and from Danish airports were cancelled, according to Danish airline news outlet Check-in.

By their calculations, that meant that 10,000-12,000 passengers were left at the gates. Half of the cancellations were by the beleaguered SAS, which nixed 42 flights in and out of Copenhagen alone. 

“We currently have high sickness absence, [technology issues and a late flight from a partner airline, ed.] and we already have a tight staffing situation, Alexandra Lindgren Kaoukji, SAS spokesperson in Denmark, told Check-in.  

READ ALSO: What are your rights if your flight is cancelled in Denmark? 

New Herlufsholm chairman: culture creates ‘problems for the weak,’ while ‘the strong’ manage

The latest wrinkle in the Herlufsholm scandal is the appointment of Jon Stokholm, former Danish Supreme Court Justice, as chairman of the board. 

The 71-year-old told newswire Ritzau that he believes Herlufsholm’s emphasis on individualism was where the school went wrong. 

“Such a culture creates problems for the weak,” Stokholm said. “The strong will cope.” (This seems an unusual way to describe students at a school struggling with bullying.) 

READ ALSO: Danish royal children withdrawn from controversial boarding school 

Artificial peninsula project Lynetteholm faces major setback 

Copenhagen’s dreams for a self-financing Lynetteholm, the new Copenhagen district to be built on a manmade peninsula in the harbour, have shattered like a ‘broken Kinder egg,”  mayor Sophie Hæstorp Andersen told broadcaster DR

New number-crunching by the ministry of transportation reveals that the profits from selling plots of land on future Lynetteholm, which promised to fund the creation of a metro connection and an eastern road ring, are likely to fall far short of that figure. 

The project was designed to solve three problems in one fell swoop — its creators say Lynetteholm will ameliorate the Copenhagen housing shortage, reduce congestion in the rest of the city and protect the mainland from storm surges in the face of climate change. 

READ ALSO: Danish parliament gives go ahead to giant artificial island off Copenhagen

Pollution linked to 10 percent of Europe’s cancer cases 

The European Environment Agency released a report today that concludes more than 10 percent of all cancer cases in Europe are preventable — because they can be tied to pollution. 

“Together, exposure to air pollution, carcinogenic chemicals, radon, UV radiation and passive smoking can account for over ten percent of the cancer burden in Europe,” the EEA wrote in a statement. 

Cancer cases due to exposure to radiation or chemical carcinogens can be reduced to “an almost insignificant level,” environment and health expert at the EEA Gerardo Sanchez told reporters last week. 

Of special interest to Danes, who sometimes eschew sunscreen during the summer months, should be the EEA’s calculation that four percent of European cancer cases are linked to natural UV radiation from the sun.