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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
Snow in Copenhagen on Wednesday morning. Photo: Emil Helms/Ritzau Scanpix

Restrictions tightened amid concerns over new Covid-19 variant

The more infectious variant of Covid-19, cluster B117, is likely to become the dominant form in Denmark, health authorities said on Tuesday. The variant was first detected in southeastern England last month.

In response and in an attempt to head off a new surge in cases, Denmark is reducing the maximum number of people allowed to meet in public from 10 to 5, and has scaled up social distancing rules.

You can read full details of the announcement here and more here on the new assembly limit.

New travel restrictions against South Africa

A new and more infectious variant of Covid-19 has also emerged in South Africa, and the government has decided to ban all residents of the African country from entering Denmark until January 17th, the Ministry of Justice has confirmed.

The variant found in South Africa is different to the B117 form first reported in the UK, but is similarly thought to be more infectious than regular forms. It is yet to be detected in Denmark, Henrik Ullum, head of the State Serum Institute said yesterday.

We’ll have full details on the South Africa travel ban in an article later this morning.

Report could pave way for impeachment case against former immigration minister

An independent legal report, scheduled to be published today, could play a decisive role in deciding whether former immigration minister Inger Støjberg faces a special impeachment court (rigsretssag), assembled by parliament, over an illegal directive she issued while in charge of the ministry in 2016. She was found last month to have misled parliament regarding the matter.

Støjberg was last week forced from her most recent position as deputy leader of the Liberal party over the scandal.

Frosty winter weather on the way

The first snow of the winter is expected to fall across the country today. Temperatures are forecast to drop to 3 degrees Celsius below freezing, meaning the snow is likely to settle in many areas.

Some parts of the country, including North Jutland, have already had a prelude to the icy weather with snowfall yesterday. The snow is expected to fall in the east of the country today before heading towards Jutland.

Motorists are advised to be careful due to potentially icy roads.


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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Object recovered near Nord Stream pipeline, Field’s shooter charged, possible ban on biker gang and other news from Denmark on Thursday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Denmark recovers object near sabotaged Nord Stream pipeline

Denmark has recovered a cylindrical object spotted near the sabotaged Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, the Danish Energy Agency said yesterday, adding it was a “smoke buoy”.

The agency said in a statement that the object had been recovered at a depth of 73 metres and that a “representative of the owner, Nord Stream 2 AG, was present during the salvage”, news wire AFP reports.

According to the energy agency, the recovery was completed on March 28th.

“Investigations indicate that the object is an empty maritime smoke buoy, which is used for visual marking,” it said in a statement, adding that “the object does not pose a safety risk.”

Danish vocabulary: at bjærge — to salvage

Suspect in Field’s shooting charged with murder

A man suspected of killing three people in the Field’s shopping mall in Copenhagen last July has been charged with murder and attempted murder, the prosecution service said on Wednesday.

“The 23-year-old man is accused of killing three people, a 17-year-old boy, a 17-year-old girl and a 46-year-old man”, it said in a statement.

The man, whose identity has not been disclosed, has also been charged with 12 counts of attempted murder.

Arrested outside Field’s just after the July 3rd shooting, the man, who has a history of mental health illness, has been detained in a closed psychiatric ward.

Investigators believe the attack was planned, Danish media have reported.

Danish vocabulary: anklagemyndighed — public prosecutor

Justice ministry considers ban on biker gang

The Ministry of Justice is weighing its options over a potential ban on the biker gang Satudarah, broadcaster DR reports.

The biker group is linked with organised crime and is a rival to other groups including Hells Angels and Bandidos.

“They constitute a serious danger and serious threat to society and to Danes. We will therefore use all imaginable resources we can within the rules of the constitution,” Justice Minister Peter Hummelgaard told DR.

Denmark’s constitution protects the right to public gathering, but the country’s laws allow the police to order criminal groups to be dissolved. The law was used against the Loyal to Familia gang in Copenhagen in 2021.

The municipality in West Jutland city Esbjerg this week used a different law to ban Satudarah from using a specified address in the town as a clubhouse.

Danish vocabulary: rockere — biker gang members

Copenhagen Zoo hopes to ignite panda romance

Copenhagen Zoo has begun a new strategy to encourage mating — giving the prospective couple more time to get to know each other.

The Danish capital’s zoo decided to put the bears in the same enclosure a month earlier than usual so they can get acquainted while temperatures remain cooler, so they don’t bicker when the mating season begins.

“This year’s panda date is under way,” the zoo wrote on its website.

The zoo also published images showing the pandas keeping a respectful distance and mostly glaring at each other, showing “there’s not exactly love in the air (yet).”

On loan from China for 15 years, Mao Sun and Xing Er arrived in Copenhagen in spring 2019 and since then all attempts to breed have been unsuccessful.

“We are trying an approach that has been successful with our polar bears and brown bears, we are putting them together now, even though Mao Sun will not be ready for several weeks,” veterinarian Mads Frost Bertelsen said in a statement reported by AFP.

Danish vocabulary: at parre sig — to mate