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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Tuesday

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

Queue at Copenhagen Airport
Baggage staff at Copenhagen Airport will resume work on Tuesday after a three-day strike. Photo: Liselotte Sabroe/Ritzau Scanpix

Copenhagen Airport baggage handlers resume work

Baggage handlers with the SAS Ground Handling company have returned to work after wildcat strikes which disrupted services from Saturday through to Monday.

Danish media including broadcaster DR and news wire Ritzau report that the baggage staff will resume work today after SAS threatened to fire them if they continued the strikes, which were in breach of their collective bargaining agreement – the labour contract between their trade union and employers.

SAS Ground Handling processes baggage for several airlines – not just SAS – in Copenhagen, meaning many passengers were affected by the strikes.

READ ALSO: Copenhagen Airport baggage strikes: Passengers may have right to compensation

One dead and several in hospital after fire in building

A fire in a residential building in the town of Holte north of Copenhagen last night resulted in one death and ten people in hospital for treatment or observation, Ritzau reports.

The person who died is an adult, but police are yet to release further information because their next of kin were yet to be informed in the early hours of Tuesday.

“This has been a terrible experience. The fire is almost out but some extinguishment is still ongoing,” North Zealand Police officer Jakob Tofte told Ritzau around 4am.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined but early investigations do not suggest any crime was committed, according to the report.

One in four hospital patients with Covid-19 receives antiviral treatment

Of the 1,465 people currently admitted to hospitals in Denmark who have Covid-19, around one in four will receive treatment for the virus itself, health authorities said yesterday.

“It’s only around one in four who are actually treated for Covid-19, meaning given antiviral treatment,” senior consultant at the State Serum Institute (SSI), Tyra Grove Krause, told DR.

“We are seeing a greater degree of people who are hospitalised with Covid. Not because of Covid. That is because of the widespread community transmission we have seen in the recent period,” Krause also said.

“You are registered as a corona admission if you have had a positive test within 14 days before being admitted. That can be seen in the increasing (hospitalisation) numbers,” she said.

The number of Covid-19 patients in intensive care in Denmark is 25, around a third of the number at the beginning of January.

READ ALSO: Covid-19: Danish inpatient total continues increase but ICUs stable

Left wing parties want to change wording of asylum rules

All of the left wing parties in parliament – the Social Liberals, Socialist People’s Party and Red Green Alliance – want to change the wording of asylum rules relating to when a refugee’s home country is safe enough for their asylum status in Denmark to be withdrawn.

Denmark’s asylum rules are based around a principle of only offering temporary protection to refugees and withdrawing their status once their home countries are deemed to be stable and safe enough for return. This has been the case since new laws were introduced in 2019.

But the wording of the law should be changed so that only “fundamental, stable and lasting changes” in the situation in home countries can elicit a return for refugees in Denmark, the parties said.

The government has faced international criticism for its policy of sending some Syrian refugees back to the Damascus area, which Danish authorities have concluded is acceptable for return.

In comments to newspaper Berlingske, Social Liberal party spokesperson Kathrine Olldag said that current rules must be changed if they make it possible for the Refugee Appeals Board (Flygtningenævnet) to conclude Afghanistan is safe enough to return refugees there.

READ ALSO: ‘I can’t go back’: Syrian refugees in Denmark face limbo after status revoked

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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Everything you need to know about the Tour de France and the release of the inquiry into the 2020 mink scandal are Denmark's headline news this Friday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Tour de Denm—uh, France 

It’s an overcast day in Copenhagen for the Grand Départ, the official kickoff of the Tour de France, at 4 p.m. Don’t be fooled when the clouds briefly part midmorning — they’ll be back with a vengeance later this afternoon with the potential to drizzle on late finishers of the time trial (including frontrunner Tadej Podegar, who’s expected to finish about 7:10 p.m.). The Danish Meteorological Institute has put out a warning  for heavy rainfall and thunderstorms for the Copenhagen area from 6-11 p.m. 

A poncho would be in order if you’re planning to watch the riders in person today, and make contingency plans for any outdoor celebrations. 

READ ALSO: Five great spots to see the Tour de France in Denmark 

How to watch the trials 

Danish streaming platform TV2 will host coverage of the Tour, as will Discovery+ in Denmark. 

If you’re watching abroad, the United States offers a selection of streaming services — the USA channel will provide live coverage, through NBC, you’ve got Peacock (their proprietary streaming platform), and the NBC Sports app. 

In the UK, ITV4 and the ITV Hub streaming service are free to watch. 

How to get around in Copenhagen today 

Between street closures, sporadically-open pedestrian crossings, and throngs of fans, trying to get from point A to point B in downtown Copenhagen will be a challenge today. 

The Tour de France team has provided an interactive map (here’s the English version) to help you navigate, including information on those pedestrian crossings of the route, public toilets, and hydration stations (though with the rain, that might be redundant). 

READ ALSO: How will the Tour de France affect traffic and travel in Denmark? 

….and a harsh mink report for Mette Frederiksen 

If all this cycling news leaves you asking, ‘but what about the mink?’, you’ll be thrilled to learn the independent commission tasked with investigating government decisions surrounding the 2020 culling of millions of the weasel-like animals has released its final report. It’s a monster at almost 2,000 pages. 

The commission finds fault with prime minister Mette Frederiksen, who, they say, made “grossly misleading” statements about the legal basis of the mink cull at a November 2020 press conference. 

The report says 10 officials, largely department heads from the Ministry of Justice, Ministry of the Environment and Food, the National Police, and the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration, should be held accountable. 

On the hot seat are Barbara Bertelsen, head of the prime minister’s department, and Mogens Jensen, former minister of food, agriculture, and fisheries.

The decision to cull the mink fell under Jensen’s purview and the commission found Jensen was aware the government had no legal authority and lied to parliament about it. Jensen resigned just two weeks after the decision was made. 

READ ALSO: Danish PM ‘grossly misled’ during mink announcement