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

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 Wednesday
A drone photo of Copenhagen taken from near Refshaleøen on December 7th. Photo: Nils Meilvang/Ritzau Scanpix

Partial lockdown of 38 municipalities comes into effect

The burger bar over the road from where I live in Copenhagen was as busy last night as I’ve seen it for months, a sign that people know they won’t be eating or drinking out again for the foreseeable future.

A partial lockdown begins today in 38 municipalities – Copenhagen, Aarhus, Odense and most of eastern Zealand. That means closed restaurants, bars and sports and cultural facilities, children sent home from school and increased working from home.

Full detail can be found in our earlier report.

READ ALSO:

Children moved from Greenland 70 years ago given official apology

The government has formally apologised to the 22 Greenlanders who were moved to Denmark and cut off from their families in the 1950s in an attempt to bridge the cultural gap between the Scandinavian country and its colony.

In 1951, 22 children were chosen to be moved to mainland Denmark from Greenland, which was a Danish colony until 1953.

The children were deprived of contact with relatives and once they returned to Greenland they were not reunited with their parents but instead put in an orphanage. Many of them would never see their families again.

“We cannot change what happened. But we can take responsibility and apologise to those we should have cared for but failed to do,” Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said in a statement.

We’ll have a full report later this morning.

Parliament approves green tax reform

A tax reform presented recently by the government, which seeks to promote green reform by businesses, has been voted through parliament.

The tax plan has been criticised for not including a tax on CO2 emissions, which had been argued for as a key tool that the government could have used to help achieve its CO2 reduction targets. Ministers said there was no easy way to quickly implement a CO2 tax.

READ ALSO: Denmark announces 'green tax reform' but omits sought-after CO2 levy

The bill enjoyed broad support in parliament, with the government and parties on both sides of the aisle voting it through. The Red Green Alliance (Enhedslisten), a left wing party which is normally an ally of the government, did not vote for the bill.

Tivoli cancels popular Christmas opening season

Amusement park Tivoli, where many people normally go in December to enjoy spectacular Christmas decorations and seasonal vibes, has chosen to close for the rest of the year as a result of the lockdown in Copenhagen, news wire Ritzau reports.

In a statement, the iconic theme park said it had understood the government’s advice “to see each other and meet in different ways as little as possible until infections are under control, especially in municipalities with tighter restrictions”, and had therefore chosen to curtail its Christmas opening season, which has been operating under a special booking system.

Although the lockdown does not require outside parks like Tivoli to completely close, all indoors areas would have had to be closed to the public, had the attraction remained open. 

Tivoli plans to open again for Easter on March 27th 2021.

Danish vocabulary:

  • Undskyldning: apology
  • Bred opbakning: cross-aisle support (for a parliamentary bill)
  • Beslutning: decision

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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Everything you need to know about the Tour de France and the release of the inquiry into the 2020 mink scandal are Denmark's headline news this Friday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Tour de Denm—uh, France 

It’s an overcast day in Copenhagen for the Grand Départ, the official kickoff of the Tour de France, at 4 p.m. Don’t be fooled when the clouds briefly part midmorning — they’ll be back with a vengeance later this afternoon with the potential to drizzle on late finishers of the time trial (including frontrunner Tadej Podegar, who’s expected to finish about 7:10 p.m.). The Danish Meteorological Institute has put out a warning  for heavy rainfall and thunderstorms for the Copenhagen area from 6-11 p.m. 

A poncho would be in order if you’re planning to watch the riders in person today, and make contingency plans for any outdoor celebrations. 

READ ALSO: Five great spots to see the Tour de France in Denmark 

How to watch the trials 

Danish streaming platform TV2 will host coverage of the Tour, as will Discovery+ in Denmark. 

If you’re watching abroad, the United States offers a selection of streaming services — the USA channel will provide live coverage, through NBC, you’ve got Peacock (their proprietary streaming platform), NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app. 

In the UK, ITV4 and the ITV Hub streaming service are free to watch. 

How to get around in Copenhagen today 

Between street closures, sporadically-open pedestrian crossings, and throngs of fans, trying to get from point A to point B in downtown Copenhagen will be a challenge today. 

The Tour de France team has provided an interactive map (here’s the English version) to help you navigate, including information on those pedestrian crossings of the route, public toilets, and hydration stations (though with the rain, that might be redundant). 

READ ALSO: How will the Tour de France affect traffic and travel in Denmark? 

….and a harsh mink report for Mette Frederiksen 

If all this cycling news leaves you asking, ‘but what about the mink?’, you’ll be thrilled to learn the independent commission tasked with investigating government decisions surrounding the 2020 culling of millions of the weasel-like animals has released its final report. It’s a monster at almost 2,000 pages. 

The commission finds fault with prime minister Mette Frederiksen, who, they say, made “grossly misleading” statements about the legal basis of the mink cull at a November 2020 press conference. 

The report says 10 officials, largely department heads from the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of the Environment and Food, the National Police, and the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration, should be held accountable. 

On the hot seat are Barbara Bertelsen, head of the prime minister’s department, and Mogens Jensen, former minister of food, agriculture, and fisheries.

The decision to cull the mink fell under Jensen’s purview and the commission found Jensen was aware the government had no legal authority and lied to parliament about it. Jensen resigned just two weeks after the decision was made. 

READ ALSO: Danish PM ‘grossly misled’ during mink announcement 

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