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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Thursday

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

High water levels at the harbour in Randers on January 17th. High winds are likely to cause high water in other areas ofDenmark on January 20th.
High water levels at the harbour in Randers on January 17th. High winds are likely to cause high water in other areas ofDenmark on January 20th. Photo: Bo Amstrup/Ritzau Scanpix

Mink farmers yet to restart businesses 

The mink fur industry in Denmark was shut down by law after the government’s controversial decision to cull millions of animals and make the trade illegal in late 2020, due to concerns over a variant of Covid-19 that had emerged from mink farms. An inquiry into the decision to cull the minks, which was later found to be illegal, is still ongoing.

A ban on the industry set down at the time expires at the end of 2022 but mink farmers are yet to apply to re-establish their businesses, news wire Ritzau writes.

Mink farmers are permitted to apply for a permit that puts their businesses on hold until they are allowed to resume them, but none have done so thus far, according to the report.

“The dramatic closure of the whole industry 18 months ago means it’s almost impossible to start again,” the chairman of the mink farmers’ association Tage Pedersen told Ritzau.

READ ALSO: Danish authorities bust second illegal mink farm

Ex-minister Støjberg explains decision not to join Danish People’s Party

When Danish People’s Party (DF) votes for a new leader at a party congress this weekend, former immigration minister Inger Støjberg won’t be one of the options.

Although senior DF figures urged Støjberg to join and immediately take the role of leader, the ex-Liberal party minister, who has never been a member of DF, declined the offer.

“I think it would be completely wrong to run for leader of a party you’ve never been a member of,” she said.

“I feel fundamentally that, if you run to be the leader of a party, you should have worn out at least two cars on country roads campaigning with members,” she said in an online discussion on her Facebook page and website, Ritzau writes.

Støjberg was last month fired from parliament after being found guilty of breaking the ministerial code, although this did not discourage DF in offering her the chance to take the party’s most senior job.

Danish tennis star through again in Melbourne after beating world no. 7

Emerging Danish tennis star Clara Tauson is in the third round of the Australian Open in Melbourne after a surprise victory over world number 7 Anett Kontaveit in straight sets. The match was completed in the early hours of Thursday Danish time.

Tauson, who defeated Australian Astra Sharma in the first round, had considerably more support from the 7,500 crowd this time around as she prevailed over her Estonian opponent.

Melbourne is the scene of the greatest moment in Danish tennis history, when Caroline Wozniacki became the only Dane to win a Grand Slam tournament in 2018.

Strong winds cause high water levels

Last night was a gusty one in much of Denmark with strong winds up to storm force in some areas. Broadcaster DR reports fallen trees and broken scaffolding in several locations.

Several bridges have been closed to high-sided vehicles due to the conditions, so it is advisable to check local traffic reports if you have a journey ahead of you.

Met agency DMI meanwhile says water levels are high on the northern coasts of Zealand and Funen. Water levels can reach up to 120-130 centimetres above normal in the worst-affected areas.

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For members


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.