Today in Denmark: A round-up of the 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 round-up of the news on Friday
Nurses filled the debating chamber in the parliament for the vote imposing the mediated solution. Photo: Philip Davali/Ritzau Scanpix

Denmark to scrap ALL Covid-19 restrictions

Denmark will on September 10th stop classifying Covid-19 as an “illness which is a critical threat to society”, meaning all remaining restrictions will expire, and you will not even require a coronapas to enter nightclubs or Superliga football games. 

In a press release issued on Friday morning, the country’s health minister Magnus Heunicke said that the high level of vaccination in Denmark, particularly among the vulnerable, had radically altered the risks posed by the virus.

“The epidemic is under control, we have record high vaccination rates,” he said in a statement. “As a result, on September 10th, we can drop some of the special rules we have had to introduce in the fight against Covid-19.”

September 10th marks the expiry date for that the executive order classifying Covid-19 as a “socially critical illness”, which was passed by the Danish parliament’s Epidemic Committee on March 10th last year. 

Danish parliament imposes pay deal on striking nurses 

The Danish parliament on Friday passed a special bill imposing a pay deal on nurses and the Danish regions that employ them. 

The bill, which will force the parties to accept the compromise reached in talks with a government mediator earlier this year, was supported by the Social Democrats, the Liberals, the Radicals, the Conservatives, the New Right party and the Liberal Alliance. It was rejected by the Socialist Left Party, the Red-Green Alliance, the Danish People’s Party, and the Christian Democrats.

The members of Denmark’s nursing union in May voted down the pay deal, opening the way for a 10-week strike. 

Denmark to join ‘green list’ for quarantine-free travel to the UK

Denmark will next week move onto the UK’s “green list”, meaning travellers from Denmark who are not vaccinated no longer not need to go into quarantine on arrival in the UK.

Denmark has evacuated nearly 1,000 people from Afghanistan 

A total of 988 people have been flown to Denmark from Afghanistan during the government’s evacuation, the country’s foreign ministry said in a statement on Friday, with the last plane due to land on Friday. 

Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod said in a statement that he was relieved that the operation had been carried out, despite the challenging conditions. 

“We can now put an end to an evacuation effort, which will no doubt be written into the history books. I think anyone who has seen the pictures from Kabul can see that it has been a hugely serious and very difficult situation,” he said. “Words cannot describe the difficult conditions under which our people in Kabul and Islamabad have operated 24 hours a day.”

Among the evacuees are 226 people who served as interpreters or other employees for the Danish armed forces in Afghanistan, or who are their family members. There are a further 161 Afghans who have worked for NATO, the EU or the UN, together with their relatives.

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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

Denmark wins in the 'world cup for chefs,' armed forces unions distance themselves from plan to scrap Great Prayer Day and other news stories in Denmark on Tuesday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

Denmark wins ‘world cup’ for chefs 

It’s another proud day for high cuisine in Denmark after chef Brian Mark Hansen won the Bocuse d’Or, the unofficial ‘World Cup’ for the culinary world held every two years. 

Hansen, head chef at the Michelin-starred Søllerød Kro in Copenhagen, unseated defending champion and host France with his take on squash and monkfish. 

Competitors train for the Bocuse d’Or “a bit like a fighter pilot or a Formula 1 driver,” Davy Tissot, 2022’s victor and president of this year’s jury, tells the Agence France-Presse. 

“Finland’s 25-year-old candidate Johan Kurkela has been known to train for
10 hours straight locked in a basement. Meanwhile, [the French competitor Nais] Pirollet trained daily for five-and-a-half hours nonstop to replicate competition conditions,” the AFP writes. 

READ MORE: World-famous Copenhagen restaurant to close after 2024

Don’t blame us: unions for Danish armed forces distance themselves from Great Prayer Day debate 

Unions for the Danish armed forces want politicians to stop pinning the end of Great Prayer Day, a public holiday set to be axed by the government, on them. 

Three unions, representing a total of more than 18,000 members in the armed forces, say association with the loss of a public holiday could undermine general support for the armed forces. 

Although the armed forces have needed the extra funds for years, Niels Tønning, chairman of the union Hovedorganisationen af Officerer i Danmark (“First Organization of Officers in Denmark”) told newspaper BT that it shouldn’t come at the expense of the freedom of Danish wage earners.

READ ALSO: Why does Denmark have an annual ‘Prayer Day’ holiday?

Fatal workplace accidents in Denmark rising 

Denmark broke a bleak record in 2022 — the highest number of fatal workplace accidents in more than ten years, according to news outlet Zetland. 

Last year, 42 people died in Denmark due to accidents at their job, the Danish Working Environment Authority said. 

The construction industry was particularly perilous, tallying 6,219 serious accidents. The DWEA found safety violations in each case, Zetland reports. 

Construction has surged in recent years, “and the easiest way to improve efficiency, the builders obviously believe, is to relax a little on security,” Flemming Hansen, chief consultant for construction for trade union 3F, told the media.