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Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday

Michael Barrett
Michael Barrett - [email protected]
Today in Denmark: A roundup of the news on Friday
The Jewish Community in Denmark held its annual Kristallnacht remembrance procession on Thursday November 9th. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix

Denmark commemorates Kristallnacht amid heightened tensions, criticism of plan to spend airline ticket tax on welfare and hail forecast for this weekend's weather. Here's the news from Denmark on Friday morning.


Kristallnacht march attended by leading politicians 

Denmark last night held its annual remembrance march for Kristallnacht, a deadly wave of antisemitic violence and plundering instigated by Nazi authorities in Germany on November 9th 1938.

The march was attended in large numbers and with participation of leading politicians. Denmark’s Chief Rabbi Jair Melchior gave a speech in front of the synagogue on Copenhagen’s Krystalgade ahead of the torch procession.

“We will all walk together. The entire political spectrum from right to left is here. We are the Danish society and we protect our minorities,” he said.

The procession took place amid reports of growing antisemitic incidents in Europe amid the war between Israel and Hamas, which began after a terror attack and incursion into Israel by militant organisation Hamas last month, in which 1,400 Israelis lost their lives.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen was among political party leaders to take part in the march. Copenhagen Police told news wire Ritzau at 7pm that the procession had been peaceful.

Vocabulary: fakkeloptog -- torch procession


Rasmussen speaks to demonstrators at Kristallnacht march

Although police reported no incidents, a small number of demonstrators holding Palestinian flags were present at the procession, Ritzau reports. That resulted in Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen, who is also leader of the Moderate party and a former prime minister, to approach the group and try to initiate a conversation according to the news wire.

"What about us Palestinians, are we not people too?" a woman in the group is reported to have said.

Rasmussen said in response that Denmark supports a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine. 

Since the attack and incursion by Hamas on October 7th, Israel has conducted massive bombardment of the Gaza strip, resulting in devastating civilian casualties on the Palestinian side. The health ministry in Gaza said on Thursday that 10,818 Palestinians, including more than 4,400 children, have been killed.

Rasmussen and PM Frederiksen both gave speeches after the procession, during which shouts referring to the ongoing siege of Gaza were also heard. These were acknowledged by the foreign minister during his speech.

"Yes, there were shouts. What about the Palestinians? Today is not about the war between Israel and Hamas. Today is about something else entirely," he said. 


Government criticised for channeling airline ticket tax into welfare

The government yesterday announced its plan to phase in a tax on airline tickets over the coming years. The tax, which will be introduced gradually, will cost an average of around 100 kroner per flight and 390 kroner for the longest-distance flights when fully imposed in 2030.

While some of the revenue from the tax will go towards developing green domestic flights and supporting regional airports, it will also be used to pay for welfare for elderly people.

This aspect of the plan has received criticism from opposition parties.

“If we are to have an airline ticket tax, and we should, the money must go back to the industry. All the revenue must go back into the industry,” climate spokesperson Samira Nawa of the Social Liberal party told Ritzau.

The Conservative party expressed similar reservations about the proposal, with climate spokesperson Mona Juul saying “this cross-financing that is the order of the day makes no sense”.

“I’m sure that the government with the budget surplus it has, is able to finance other measures in other ways,” Juul said.

Vocabulary: proven – revenue

Hail and thunder forecast for weekend’s weather

A low pressure zone heading for Denmark will bring a cocktail of rain and wind, with thunder and hailstorms also possible in some areas.

“It’s going to be mostly rain throughout the weekend. For some periods there might be hail and thunder, especially in Jutland,” meteorologist Klaus Larsen of national met office DMI told Ritzau.

The harshest weather is expected on Friday, with temperatures at around 8 degrees Celsius during the day and dropping close to freezing point tonight.

Sunday is likely to be the best of the three days weather wise, with the low front having passed across Denmark and over the Baltic Sea by that point.

Vocabulary: hagl – hail (weather)


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