Danish prime minister promises ‘answers’ over deleted mink texts

Danish prime minister Mette Frederiksen at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow on November 1st. Frederiksen has promised to answer questions from media and parliament over deleted text messages related to the 2020 decision to cull fur farm mink.
Danish prime minister Mette Frederiksen at the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow on November 1st. Frederiksen has promised to answer questions from media and parliament over deleted text messages related to the 2020 decision to cull fur farm mink. Photo: Phil Noble/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix
Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen says she will answer central questions over deleted text messages relating to the government’s decision to cull fur farm mink in 2020.

Denmark controversially killed all of its 15-17 million minks late last year over a mutated strain of Covid-19 found in some of the animals.

Studies had suggested the variant could jeopardise the effectiveness of future vaccines. 

But with the mass culling programme already underway, a court challenge to the order found that the government’s decision had no legal basis. 

A subsequent official inquiry into the government’s handling of the matter had requested access to Frederiksen’s cell phone text messages and those of three close advisers.

However, the prime minister said they no longer existed as her phone setting automatically deleted them after 30 days.

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The PM on Monday promised that the government would cooperate in answering questions over the deleted texts.

“A number of questions have been asked by the media and parliament and the Prime Minister’s office will naturally answer those questions,” Frederiksen said at a briefing in Glasgow, where she is currently attending the COP26 climate summit.

The PM’s office had no further comment when approached by news wire Ritzau on Monday.

Frederiksen earlier said that she had been advised by her ministry to delete texts after 30 days for security reasons.

Recipients of the SMS messages are not asked to delete them, however.

The automatic deletions could prevent the inquiry from scrutinising communication within the government in connection with the decision to order the mink cullings. Efforts are underway to recover the messages, according to earlier reports.


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