Danish Parliament Adopts Declaration Barring Muslim-Majority Neighborhoods

In this September 2015 file photo, refugees from Syria arrive at Sweden's Stockholm Central Station after traveling by train through Denmark and Malmo.

By Published on February 15, 2017

The Danish parliament has passed a declaration that says no residential areas in the country should have an immigrant-majority population.

The populist Danish People’s Party (DF) introduced the bill amid concerns that the immigrant population of a Copenhagen neighborhood has exerted undue influence. The ruling coalition backed the proposal, which passed in a 55-54 vote Monday.

“Parliament notes with concern that today there are areas in Denmark where the number of immigrants from non-Western countries and their descendants is above 50 percent. It is parliament’s opinion that Danes should not be a minority in residential areas in Denmark,” the statement reads.

The text in the declaration makes a clear distinction between “Danes” and “immigrants from non-Western countries,” which the opposition regards as racist.

“How will we ever achieve good integration if it is stated in advance that your ethnic background prohibits you from being considered Danish? This isn’t just trivial hair-splitting, this is alarming!” Martin Ostergaard, leader of the Social Liberals, wrote on his Facebook page.

DF defended the wording of the declaration, saying it’s an issue that needs to be discussed.

“I think that most Danes are outraged that there are places in Denmark where the Danes are obviously a minority,” DF MP Martin Henriksen said in a debate Saturday. “If you look at the official statistics, there are places where immigrants and the descendants of immigrants from non-Western countries are the majority. We in the Danish Peoples’ Party think that’s a problem and we need to talk about it.”


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