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TODAY IN DENMARK

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

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

A new military hub for Nato on Danish shores, a filmmaker representing Denmark at Cannes, and a slightly cooler weekend are among the top news stories in Denmark this Friday.

Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

‘Military hub’ for US, Nato forces coming to Denmark 

The port city of Esbjerg, which also played host to this week’s green energy meetings, has been flagged as the site of a new mustering point for Nato and especially United States military forces, according to a press release from the Danish Ministry of Defense. 

The United States expressed interest in Esbjerg, on Jutland’s west coast, in particular as a jumping-off point to transport troops and technology to the Baltic Sea area. 

“The Port of Esbjerg has a good location and size, proximity to the airport, good connections to the railway and motorway network and is close to several large barracks,” the press release said. 

The Danish government plans to make a number of costly improvements to the port to better support the new military hub. Those are expected to be completed by the end of 2023, the release said. 

READ ALSO: Denmark prepared to send 800 troops to Baltic states

Iranian living in Copenhagen shines at Cannes Film Festival

Danish-Iranian Ali Abassi, 40, is making waves at the Cannes Film Festival with his new film “Holy Spider,” the “gritty story of a serial killer ‘cleansing’ the Iranian holy city of Mashhad,” newswire Agence France-Presse reports. 

Abassi grew up in Iran and immigrated to Scandinavia to study architecture in Stockholm at the age of 21, ultimately settling in Copenhagen after attending the National Film School of Denmark. 

In 2018, Abassi brought home the trophy for Cannes’ Un Certain Regard section with “Border,” which AFP describes as an “eccentric troll-fantasy film about a border guard.” 

Cooler weather ahead 

After two balmy days, Denmark can expect a cooler and cloudier weekend, according to the Danish Meteorological Institute. 

“The beautiful weather has almost disappeared like dew to the sun,” meteorologist Klaus Larsen told newswire Ritzau with a little poetic flair. 

We can look forward (or not) to a Saturday with minimal sunshine, “fresh” winds, occasional showers, and temperatures between 14-18 degrees. 

Sunday is your best chance for outdoor fun, Larsen says. “It will stay mostly dry with little or no sun and winds that will decrease and become light to steady during the day.” 

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