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

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 Thursday
Shopping in Copenhagen on Wednesday evening. The incoming national lockdown will close all non-essential stores. Photo: Martin Sylvest/Ritzau Scanpix

Partial lockdown becomes full lockdown

The Covid-19 situation in Denmark has become as critical as it was during the spring wave of the epidemic.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen announced last night that the country will be “practically closed down” from December 25th, with some measures to take effect as early as today.

Shopping centres and shopping arcades will close today, while businesses such as hairdressers, physiotherapists and driving schools will close from Monday December 21st.

All retail businesses, with the exception of supermarkets, pharmacies and other stores which sell daily essentials, will be closed from December 25th until January 3rd.

Frederiksen called the current coronavirus situation “very serious”, adding that just under half of Denmark's Covid-19 hospital beds are now in use.

You can read the details of the lockdown and announcement in our report.

Rape law requiring sexual consent to be passed

A long-awaited new law is to be passed today, reforming sexual violence laws to make consent rather than violence the basis for determining rape.

A parliamentary majority will vote the new law through at 10:30 this morning, an event set to be celebrated by women’s organisations, activists and rape victims outside the Christiansborg parliament.

Earlier this year, the Federation of Danish women said the law would be a “historic victory for legality and the right to take sexual decisions”.

A similar law has been in place in Sweden since 2018.

Talks over workplace harassment law

The government is to negotiate with unions and employers’ associations over ways in which to fight sexual harassment at Danish workplaces.

The talks are just one of 14 different initiatives recently announced by the government in a broad plan to tackle the issue.

Denmark saw a resurgence of the #MeToo debate in the late summer and autumn which proved to have a far greater impact in the country than the original 2017 movement.

READ ALSO: New #MeToo wave challenges Denmark's image as haven of equality

Government suspected of withholding security report on Danish children in Syria

The government is suspected – by its own political allies in parliament – of withholding a 2019 report by police intelligence agency PET on Danish children in camps in Syria.

According to the report, the agency concluded in 2019 that the children – who are in the camps because their parents travelled to Syria to support militant groups – do not pose a threat to Danish security. But it was not made public by the government until March 2020.

The government has resisted repatriating Danish nationals, including children, from the Syrian camps.

The story was first reported by newspaper Ekstra Bladet based on information provided by confidential sources. We’ll have more on this in an article later today.

Danish vocabulary:

  • Samtykke: consent
  • Chikane: harassment
  • At hemmeligholde: to withhold from public, keep secret

 

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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Monday

Police give more details on the Copenhagen shooting, SAS negotiations could end today and cooler summer weather are among the main stories in Denmark this Monday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Monday

Copenhagen shooting suspect known to mental health services 

Police in Denmark have confirmed the gunman who killed three people and wounded several others in a shooting at the Field’s mall in Copenhagen on Sunday, was known to mental health services. Police said they believe he acted alone and there was no sign of terrorism.

The three killed have been identified as a Danish woman and man, both aged 17, and a 47-year-old Russian citizen residing in Denmark.

Another four were injured in the shooting: two Danish women, aged 19 and 40, and two Swedish citizens, a 50-year-old man and a 16-year-old woman.

Field’s shopping mall won’t open until at least next Monday, according to its website. Most roads have now opened, apart from the area right around Field’s and the shopping mall car park.

Trains and the metro are also running as usual to and from Ørestad Station, which is located at Field’s.

READ MORE:

LATEST: Suspect in Copenhagen shooting had history of mental health issues✎

UPDATED: What we know so far about the Copenhagen mall shooting

SAS negotiations deadline today

SAS hope to find a solution in their negotiations with the airline’s pilots about their salary and working conditions by midday today. Talks resumed on Sunday morning before the extended deadline of midday on Monday. If an agreement can’t be reached, it could mean that up to a thousand pilots will go on strike.

The pilots are employed by SAS’s parent company, SAS Scandinavia, and have announced strike action because they are not satisfied with their salary and working conditions at SAS.

In addition, the pilots are dissatisfied with the fact that instead of re-employing old SAS pilots, priority is given to hiring new pilots on cheaper agreements in the two subsidiaries SAS Link and SAS Connect.

On Saturday morning, when the parties stated that they would continue the negotiations up until and including Monday at 12 noon, there was hope of being able to land an agreement.

People in Denmark can save millions of litres of petrol with more bike rides

People living in Denmark are known for their love of cycling but it is hoped the Tour de France will encourage even more people to choose their bike over their car.

Calculations from DI Transport show that if people in Denmark started cycling 10 percent more instead of using the car, then 7.7 million litres of petrol and 4.8 million litres of diesel could be saved each year.

“If you replace the car with the bike, it is just a win-win on all fronts. You save petrol costs and get more exercise, and at the same time you help the climate and reduce congestion on the roads”, Karsten Lauritzen, industry director at DI Transport said.

Cool summer weather coming Denmark’s way

Although Monday starts with sunshine, it will quickly turn to cloud with some rain, according to the Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI).

Monday’s temperatures will vary between 17 and 20 degrees. It’s a similar picture for the rest of the week, with DMI forecasting cooler temperatures and showers. Thursday is predicted to be the warmest day of the week, where temperatures may reach over 20 degrees but with some rain.

“It is not exactly the best beach weather if you are on a west-facing coast”, according to Bolette Brødsgaard from DMI, due to the strong westerly winds from Wednesday onwards. However she adds that “every day it will be possible to get something good out of the weather – it is after all summer. It’s just a matter of finding a shelter or keeping an eye on the radar when it rains.”

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