For members


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

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 Monday
People head for coronavirus tests in Copenhagen's Nordvest area on Saturday. Photo: Philip Davali/Ritzau Scanpix

Some stores reopen, some students return

Shops with an area of under 5,000 square metres can open their doors to customers today as coronavirus restrictions are eased slightly.

Senior school classes in some areas are among those allowed to attend lessons on person under the new restrictions.

Here’s more detail on the slight easing of restrictions in our report from their announcement last week.

Parents must give permission for children’s Covid-19 tests at schools

Parents must provide written permission for children under the age of 15 to take Covid-19 tests offered at schools, news wire Ritzau reports. Permission only needs to be given once, regardless of how many tests are taken over the coming weeks and months. That is according to a statement from the Ministry of Health.

In the political agreement for partially reopening schools, authorities are asking students over the age of 12 and teachers to take a Covid-19 test twice weekly.

More infectious variant detected in Copenhagen neighbourhood

A number of cases of a more infectious variant of Covid-19 have been detected in the Nordvest (north-west) neighbourhood in Copenhagen. Wide-scale testing has been conducted in the area since Friday, when authorities announced that the B1351 variant had been detected and asked all residents to be tested.

The 14th and 15th cases of the variant were confirmed by health minister Magnus Heunicke on Sunday evening. 

Analyses are undergoing to confirm whether the latest cases are B1351, first detected in South Africa, or P1, first detected in Brazil. The two types share characteristics and are thought to have some resistance to currently available vaccines, Ritzau writes.

Liberal party wants Denmark to cooperate with Assad regime in Syria

Last year, Denmark began withdrawing residency permits from some Syrian refugees from the Damascus area, with immigration authorities now deeming that part of the Middle Eastern country safe for return. Syrian refugees in Denmark who could be returned to the area have spoken about the peril they may face if they are deported back to Syria.

Rejected asylum seekers and others with no legal right to reside in Denmark are normally accommodated at so-called ‘departure centres’ (udrejsecentre) if they do not agree to leave voluntarily and if Denmark has no repatriation arrangement in place with their home country. This is the case for refugees from Syria, because Denmark does not cooperate with or recognise the regime of Bashar al-Assad.

The opposition Liberal party appears to be calling for that to change. The party’s immigration spokesman Mads Fuglede told newspaper Jyllands-Posten that the Liberals want “an agreement in which we get Syria to take back its citizens”.

“If Denmark doesn’t think that can be done, we should push for dialogue with the Assad regime at EU level,” Fuglede also said.

The government has already rejected the suggestion and other parties have also pushed back against the Liberals’ apparent willingness to cooperate with Assad, whose regime is responsible for years of atrocities.

In a Facebook post yesterday evening, Fuglede appeared to draw back somewhat on the comments given to Jyllands-Posten.

“I want to stress that the Liberal party does not think Denmark should recognise the Assad regime,” he wrote.

“But we should discuss what to do with all the Syrian refugees in Europe as Syria has become safer around Damascus,” he added.

More anti-lockdown protests over the weekend 

Eight people were arrested in an anti-lockdown demonstration in Copenhagen on Saturday.

Organised by a group calling itself “Men in Black”, the rally of around 1,200 people in the Danish capital was the first since the government announced last week that it was extending many anti-coronavirus restrictions.

The group has previously arranged demonstrations in Aalborg and Copenhagen.  In January one of the protests in Copenhagen included the burning of an effigy of Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, leading to the arrest of two men.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.
For members


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), 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