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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

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Ritzau/AFP/The Local - [email protected]
Today in Denmark: A roundup of the latest news on Monday
The Aalborg Carnival in 2011. The festival has been held every year since 1983. Photo: Fulhamzimmer/Wikimedia Commons

Danish parliament to vote on euthanasia proposal, woman reports rape at Aalborg festival, former minister calls for fixed parliamentary terms and higher threshold, and government strikes health deal with regions. Here's the day's main news from Denmark.


Man held on suspicion of Aalborg Karneval rape 

A 41-year-old man has been sentenced to five weeks of pre-trial detention for involvement in the rape that took place at the Aalborg Karneval street festival on Saturday. The man is being held on suspicion of rape and sexual harassment. 

According to the media the man is being held for "rape in a sexual situation other than intercourse". 

The woman who was attacked on Saturday was so severely intoxicated that she was unable to resist and the man, according to the police, filmed the rape as it took place and then sent the film to two other people. 

The man has denied committing a crime. The Aalborg Karneval has been held in the city in northern Jutland every year since 1983. 

Danish vocab: blufærdighed

Former minister wants fewer political parties and fixed parliamentary terms

Karsten Lauritzen, a former minister for the right-wing Liberal Party, has called for parliamentary reforms to reduce the number of parties in the parliament and fix the length of parliamentary terms, complaining that "something has gone amok" in the system. 

Fixed five-year terms, he said, would reduce the stress connected with the fact that a prime minister can call an election at all times. 

He said Denmark's low 2 percent parliamentary threshold should be increased to 8 percent to reduce the number of parties in the parliament.  

"I know that some people will say this is undemocratic. I can only say that there's no double that the fact that we have so many parties is damaging to a little country like Denmark," he told the Berlingske newspaper. 

Danish vocabulary: spærregrænsen – the parliamentary threshold


Danish parliament to vote on citizens' proposal on euthanasia 

A citizens' proposal to allow euthanasia in Denmark has received 50,000 signatures, meaning the proposal will be debated and voted on in the Danish parliament for the first time. 

The Danish Medical Association, which represents doctors in the country, is calling on MPs to reject the proposal. 

"There are many reasons for this: we do not think that suffering should be managed by killing people; we are afraid of the slippery slope we see in countries where euthanasia has been brought in; and we think one should invest in proper end-of-life palliative care," said Klaus Klausen, chair of the association's ethics committee. 

In 2018, a similar proposal reached 8,386 signatures and in 2019, it reached 1,409, according to the Politiken newspaper. 

Danish vocabulary: aktiv dødshjælp – euthanasia


Government strikes budget deal with regions

Denmark's government has struck a budget deal with the regions, which will increase health spending by 1.34 billion kroner in 2024, the country's finance ministry wrote on its website on Friday. 

Under the deal, the regions have committed to reducing their spending on administration by 0.3 billion kroner in 2024, with the extra money used for increasing salary levels and other employment benefits to help maintain staffing levels. 

The government has also ring-fenced 232 million kronor for treatment of those with so-called 'double diagnoses' and establishing special treatment areas. 

Danish vocabulary: sundhedsområdet – the health area


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