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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Find out what's going on in Denmark today with The Local's short roundup of the news in less than five minutes.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
Alcohol-free beer is becoming a more common preference in Denmark, according to new supermarket figures. Photo: Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix

Sales of alcohol free beer on the up 

Denmark has something of a reputation for being a heavy-drinking nation, but there are signs that some are changing their habits.

Sales of alcohol-free beer at supermarket company Coop doubled between 2013 and 2020, news wire Ritzau reports. Coop owns several major Danish supermarket chains including Irma, SuperBrugsen, Fakta and Kvickly.

“There’s a clear trend in the sales of alcohol-free beer nationally. We’ve seen it with increasing strength from 2013 onwards, and in 2020, which was an unusual year, alcohol-free beer was among the seven product groups which increased the most,” Coop head of information Jens Juul Nielsen told Ritzau.

Better products and choice, as well as increasing focus on health amongst customers, are factors in the trend, Nielsen said.

Potential change to travel guidelines in weekly update

The foreign ministry updates its travel guidelines every Friday, meaning rules affecting whether incoming or returning travellers to Denmark can change, should the country from which they are travelling be given a new colour.

Denmark’s Covid-19 travel guidelines designates countries and regions under four different colour categories: green, yellow orange and red.

Last week’s update saw parts of the UK change to red and a number of popular holiday regions in Greece and Spain switched from green to yellow.

READ ALSO:

We’ll report any significant changes once they come in.

Copenhagen Airport baggage handlers resume work after brief action

Baggage handlers from the SGH company resumed work late last night after striking on Thursday, resulting in delays to a number of departures, Ritzau reported.

SGH is one of a number of companies that handle luggage at Copenhagen Airport, meaning some services were affected.

According to union media Fagbladet 3F, the action was taken in protest at a lack of options for workers to plan their schedules and a heavy weighting of weekend and night work.

Mixed weekend weather predicted

If you’re planning a barbecue this weekend, it’s probably a good idea to have it on Saturday.

Today will see a cloudy start clear up with temperatures reaching up to 25 degrees Celsius, while Saturday is expected to bring sunshine and up to 27 degrees, according to national meteorologist DMI.

Wet weather is forecast throughout Sunday, however, with clouds and rain likely from the outset.

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TODAY IN DENMARK

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Murder at a luxury Copenhagen hotel, changes to laws on Ukrainian refugees, and new Covid surveillance strategies are among the top news stories in Denmark this Thursday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Danish government wants to make Ukrainian refugee “start date” more flexible 

As the law currently stands, Ukrainians who happened to have left their home country — perhaps for vacation or business — just before war broke out could have trouble gaining residence in Denmark. 

The Danish government have announced plans to change the ‘cut-off date’ for when people must have left Ukraine to be considered war refugees from February 24th to February 1st. 

Parliament will consider the amendment to the current “Ukrainian law,” which grants two years’ residence to refugees who meet certain stipulations, including when they fled the country. 

READ ALSO: Denmark plans ‘Ukraine towns’ to accommodate war refugees 

Without widespread testing, how will Denmark predict next Covid wave? 

With Denmark’s once-wide network of public Covid test sites nearly gone, the State Serum Institute — Denmark’s infectious disease agency — is piloting a new program that it hopes will detect upticks in infections.

Ten thousand blood donors and the members of their households will be randomly chosen to participate in the “PCR Home Test Study,” the SSI says. Those who agree to participate will receive test kits from the government and will be asked to self-test once a week for a month, registering each sample in TestCenter Denmark’s app and sending it to the SSI for processing. 

If a new wave is detected, the SSI will consider recommending boosters for groups at high risk, director Henrik Ullum told Danish newswire Ritzau. 

If the program is successful, it could be deployed to monitor other respiratory viruses, such as the flu, Ullum added. 

READ ALSO: Which Covid self-tests should you buy (and avoid) in Denmark? 

Danish man pleads guilty to bow and arrow attack in Norway 

Espen Andersen Brathen the 38-year-old Danish man accused of using a bow and arrow outside a supermarket and stabbing five to death with a knife in the Norwegian town of Kongsberg last October, pleaded guilty to all charges yesterday. 

Although the attack was initially thought to be an act of terrorism, three experts who observed him assessed that Brathen was experiencing paranoid schizophrenia, newswire Agence France-Presse reports. Both the prosecution and defense agree that a psychiatric commitment, rather than a prison sentence, is appropriate. 

Murder at luxury Copenhagen hotel 

The NH Collection on Strandgade — home to the “Feel Safe at NH” campaign during the Covid pandemic — was the site of what authorities describe as a brutal murder on Sunday.  

A 28-year-old man suffered head injuries in a room in the NH Collection, where rooms start at 3000 kroner a night, and died of his injuries Monday evening. Police have one man, a 20-year-old, in custody for the crime and are seeking a 24-year-old Dutch citizen as an alleged accomplice. 

Authorities also suspect the 20-year-old currently in custody in another crime three hours after the incident on Strandgade — a gruesome knife attack at an “apartment hotel” in Silkegade. According to charges read at a preliminary hearing in court yesterday, the second victim was stabbed repeatedly, his cheek was ripped open, and an ear was cut off. 

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