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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Wednesday

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

A parking spot for charging electric and hybrid cars in Copenhagen. A tax incentive for the latter type of vehicle has been criticised by left wing parties.
A parking spot for charging electric and hybrid cars in Copenhagen. A tax incentive for the latter type of vehicle has been criticised by left wing parties. File photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix

Conservative parties want Danish entry Covid test rules lifted

After Sweden yesterday dropped rules requiring travellers from Denmark and elsewhere to present a negative Covid-19 test on arrival, the Danish Liberal (Venstre) and Conservative parties have called for the government here to take the same step.

Denmark introduced entry testing rules for travellers in late December. The test requirements apply regardless of vaccination status.

“This is a nuisance for our businesses. And there is no longer any real reason for it, so these restrictions should be removed,” Liberal EU spokesperson Kim Valentin told Ritzau.

The testing rules, which were initially set to expire on January 17th, are now in place until January 31st.

Patient guarantee to be reinstated

A treatment guarantee for patients on the Danish health system, which was suspended on January 3rd due to concerns over strain on hospitals during the Covid-19 wave, will be reinstated.

The so-called behandlingsgaranti or treatment guarantee, provided by the national health system, gives patients the right to be treated within 30 days, if necessary by moving their treatments to a different hospital (including some private hospitals).

The guarantee will be reinstated on Friday January 21st, the Ministry of Health said in a statement yesterday.

“Even though we have high infection numbers, the number of hospital admissions (with Covid-19) has not increased by the same degree and we have seen a decline in intensive care patients. So it is a good thing that we can reintroduce the patient guarantee,” Health Minister Magnus Heunicke said in the statement.

Tax subsidy for hybrid vehicles in question

The three left-wing parties which prop up the government are in favour of changing a tax subsidy for plug-in hybrid cars, newspaper Information reports.

In a December 2020 agreement, the government set the target of 775,000 green cars in Denmark by 2030, of which 10 percent may be plug-in hybrids.

At the beginning of this year, 80,000 cars of that type were registered in Denmark, meaning the latter part of the target has been fulfilled.

The problem is that the hybrids are not fully emissions-free, so the incentive is counterintuitive because it is resulting in a too-high proportion of hybrid cars, critics have argued.

Danish soldiers deployed to Mali

A contingent of some 90 Danish soldiers arrived in Mali on Tuesday to join European special forces supporting the country’s anti-jihadist operations, Denmark’s military confirmed to news wire AFP.

The contingent, whose deployment was announced in April, is stationed in Menaka in eastern Mali. Its mandate runs until early 2023.

“The aim is to stabilise Mali and parts of the Liptako-Gourma tri-border area between Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso and to ensure the protection of civilians against terrorist groups,” the armed forces said in a statement.

Denmark has previously sent troops to participate in military interventions in Mali, some with the UN’s MINUSMA peacekeeping force and others with the French-led Operation Barkhane.

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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

A blustery Ascension Day, monkeypox vaccinations, and treatment for Ukrainian war wounded are among the top news stories this Thursday in Denmark.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

Glædelig Kristi Himmelfartsdag, or happy Ascension Day! This public holiday in Denmark is tied to a Christian holiday celebrating Jesus’s ascent to heaven — some children call it flyvedag, or ‘fly day.’ Expect store closures and busy roads as people hurry to holiday homes.  

READ ALSO: How do Denmark’s public holidays stack up against the rest of Europe?

Outdoor plans today? Time to re-evaluate 

Denmark can look forward to scattered showers and spotty cloud cover on Thursday, but the Danish Meteorological Institute issued a specific caution to would-be picnickers — don’t try to eat your Ascension day lunch outside due to impressive winds across the country. 

Denmark purchases more monkeypox vaccines, though risk remains low 

After Denmark’s first two cases of monkeypox were identified this week, 200 vaccinations for the virus are set to arrive tomorrow. 

Magnus Heunicke, Danish minister of health, added that the government plans to purchase an additional 2,000-3,000 vaccines, though the risk to the general population remains very low. 

“It is not about a community vaccine, but targeted at close contacts,” Heunicke said. 

READ ALSO: Monkeypox in Denmark: what causes it, and is it serious?

Denmark open to receiving more Ukrainian war wounded 

Health minister Heunicke tweeted that Denmark is willing to host and care for up to 200 people who need hospital treatment due to the war in Ukraine — “both soldiers and civilians.” 

To date, Denmark has received ten such patients, Heunicke adds. In early May, a publication by the Danish Medical Association wrote that only “a handful of patients” affected by the Ukraine conflict had been hospitalised in Denmark, with war casualties only “a few of these.” 

According to The Kyiv Independent, Lithuania is preparing to receive wounded Ukrainian soldiers for “rehabilitation” over the coming weeks.