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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
File photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix

Left-wing party opposed to mining project wins Greenland vote

The left-wing environmentalist party Inuit Ataqatigiit, which is opposed to a controversial mining project, won a clear victory in Greenland’s parliamentary election, according to results released this morning.

With 36.6 percent of the vote, Inuit Ataqatigiit (IA) was ahead of Siumut, a social democratic party that has dominated politics in the Danish territory since it gained autonomy in 1979.

The election campaign for parliament’s 31 seats has also centred on fishing, the main driver of Greenland’s economy.

And at a time when young Greenlanders are reconnecting with their Inuit roots and questioning their Danish colonial heritage, social issues and cultural identity have also been part of the debate.

A strong local economy is crucial if the island wants to gain full independence from Copenhagen someday.

More on the Greenland election result here.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about the elections in Greenland

Amateur footballer given prison sentence for assaulting female referee

A 29-year-old man playing in the amateur-level Serie 4 football league has been sentenced to 20 days in prison for assaulting an 18-year-old female referee, broadcaster DR reports.

The player was given a 10-minute ‘sinbin’ (an additional punishment for receiving a yellow card at this level of the game in Denmark) for dissent and reacted by pushing the referee, spitting towards her and calling her a “whore” as he left the field, according to the report.

The Danish Football Association (DBU) last month presented a plan to boost the safety of officials at grass roots level, partly in reaction to the incident, which occurred last September.

The player, who denied the charges against him, was not present at the court in Sønderborg. In addition to the criminal sentence, he will face a six-match ban from playing.

Record number of trucks crossed Great Belt Bridge last month

The number of lorries driven across the Great Belt Bridge, the lengthy fixed link between Zealand and Funen, hit record levels in March.

A total of 149,712 trucks made the crossing, beating the previous record from October 2019, operating company Sund & Bælt said in a statement.

Freight traffic on the bridge has been impacted less by the Covid-19 crisis than private transport, according to the company.

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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Copenhagen to trial four-day work week, Danske Bank loss after US fines, Copenhagen to offer physiotherapy without referral, and a new sleeper from Copenhagen to Berlin. Here's the day's news from Denmark.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Copenhagen city government to trial four-day work week 

Copenhagen’s city government have voted to trial a four-day week for certain employees from the start of 2024, TV2 has reported

This means that several divisions in the city’s offices will be able to have a shorter work week. Copenhagen’s city government is Denmark’s biggest employer with 45,000 employees. 

“We know that there is a relatively big stress crisis in Denmark and that one of the remedies is to have shorter working and more flexible working times,” said Troels Christian Jakobsen from The Alternative, who proposed the trial.  

Danish vocab: et redskab – a remedy/tool

Danish bank posts loss after US money laundering fine

Danske Bank reported heavy losses for 2022 on Thursday as Denmark’s biggest lender was hit by huge fines in the United States and at home over money laundering.

The bank posted a loss of 5.1 billion Danish kroner ($753 billion) last year.

But it expects to bounce back into the green in 2023 as it forecast a net profit in the range of 15-17 billion kroner for the year.

The bank said 2022 was “an unusual year” with market volatility, soaring inflation following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and a “deteriorating macroeconomic outlook”.

Danske Bank also set aside nearly 1.8 billion euros in provisions for legal cases related to a money laundering scandal involving its branch in Estonia.

Danish region wants health service physiotherapy without a referral from doctor

Greater Copenhagen says it wants to extend nationally a scheme allowing patients to access physiotherapy through the public health system without a doctor’s referral.

Under current rules, referral from a doctor covers around 40 percent of the cost of physiotherapy treatment.

Patients can go directly to physiotherapists without a doctors’ referral if they pay the full cost of treatment.

The proposed scheme would see physiotherapists make the decision as to whether the patient qualifies for the subsidy.

A trial project in two municipalities in the region, Ballerup and Frederikssund, proved popular with patients and doctors.

Danish vocab: lægehenvisning – a doctor’s referral

New rail service planned through Norway, Sweden and Denmark to Hamburg

Plans for a new rail service running from Oslo and stopping in Gothenburg, Malmö and Copenhagen before arriving in Hamburg are in the works, Swedish state-owned rail operator SJ has said.

Sweden’s state-owned SJ, along with Denmark’s DSB and DB of Germany, plans to offer a new international train line which runs between the Norwegian capital Oslo and Hamburg in northern Germany.

The planned route would run daily, departing from Oslo at 8am before making stops in Gothenburg, Malmö and Copenhagen and arriving in Hamburg at 7pm. A service departing Hamburg and terminating in Gothenburg is also planned.

The 11 hour service would be quicker than the equivalent journey using either a car and ferry connection or existing train services.

The planned service will enter into operation in 2027. Petter Essén, head of SJ’s vehicle and traffic programme, said the route made sense as it would connect a long stretch which doesn’t have continuous train traffic.

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