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Long prison sentences for bikers

London’s congestion charge offers lessons



750,000 kr fine for a ten-second sample


Denmark’s only English-language newspaper |

7 - 13 October 2011 | Vol 14 Issue 40



‘Fat tax’ gets global attention, but will it lead to results on the scales?

3 Cycling championships show city’s potential Managing director of Wonderful Copenhagen wants to see more big events come to the city




New crop of stars hope to end Olympic athletics gold drought ... in 2016

A new chapter in Danish politics begins


The journalist king Undercover Danish journalist blew the lid off Italy’s war crimes in its northern African colonies; 70 years after his death his name is still revered in Libya


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“New era” for nation’s immigration debate


New regime abolishes Immigration Ministry and begins dismantling last government’s anti-immigrant legacy


OR THE PAST decade, immigration and integration have been the most contentious elements in Danish politics. Over the tenure of the Liberal-Conservative (VK) government and its ally, the fervently anti-immigration Danish People’s Party (DF), the rules for residency permits, family reunification, asylum and citizenship changed constantly – nearly always becoming stricter – and the immigration debate became more and more charged. With one fell swoop, the new Social

Dem-Social Lib-Socialist People’s Party (S-R-SF) coalition this week sent a strong signal that all of that is about to change. The Immigration Ministry – which played such an important role in Danish headlines and in thousands of people’s lives – is being disbanded, and the Immigration Service (Udlændingeservice) – where so many queued up with stacks of documents and hopes in their hands – will no longer be a self-standing institution. The Immigration Ministry and Immigration Service’s 300 employees will be absorbed into the Justice Ministry and Social Ministry, among others. There will no longer be an ‘immigration minister’, but a combined ‘social and integration minister’, the Social Dems’ Karen Hækkerup. Abolishing the ministry has enor-

Women and Men are we equal.. ..What does Islam say? Page 7

mous symbolic significance for the country. In one stroke, Helle ThorningSchmidt’s new government has defused the word ‘immigration’ and effectively ‘integrated’ immigration issues into the larger contexts of justice and social life. “To a very large degree it signals a break with what the Immigration Ministry has come to stand for in the public debate – namely, absurdly unfair rules,” Aarhus University professor in citizenship Jørgen Grønnegaard Christensen told Information newspaper. If the symbolism was not clear enough, the new coalition government’s common policy (Regeringsrundlag), an 80-page document released on Monday, spelt it out in plain words: the divisive tone in the immigration debate was over.

“The vast majority of immigrants in Denmark do not have problems integrating,” the common policy states. “They are completely normal members of Danish society.” Among the concrete changes described in the common policy are: the elimination of the ‘points system’ for family reunification; dramatic reductions to the cash security and application fees; new freedoms and work privileges for asylum seekers; equalisation of welfare benefits for immigrants and Danes; guaranteed citizenship for all children born and raised in Denmark, regardless of their parents’ citizenship or their own criminal records; a thor-

Immigration continues on page 5



Week in revieW

The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011 Scanpix

Record temps

The Week’s MOsT Read sTORIes aT Fire destroys kB hallen before sex fair opening here are denmark’s new ministers new cabinet. new policies. new government ready to roll ‘Millionaire tax’ scrapped, but ‘24-year rule’ stands Forced co-operation in custody cases baffles foreigners

FROM OUR aRChIVes Ten YeaRs agO. a sas plane on its way to Copenhagen collides with a Cessna and bursts into flames, killing a total of 118 people. FIVe YeaRs agO. having previously met his future wife Mary at the 2000 Olympics, Crown prince Frederik announces his candidacy for the International Olympic Committee.

Throughout the country on Saturday, people could be found taking advantage of the unseasonably warm weather. With temperatures reaching over 25 degrees, it was the warmest October day on record. Here, family members take a dip in Fussingø Lake near randers.

73-year-old building and believes there is hope. “In our opinion, the building can be reconstructed. That’s our starting point now. The next step is to meet with the owner of the building and plan how to move forward,” Munch said. The fire is thought to have been caused by a lamp placed too close to some cardboard boxes.

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Gay marriage

THe new government will allow gays and lesbians to be married in church. Their new common policy states that all members of the Church of Denmark (folkekirke) – regardless of their sexual orientation – should have the opportunity to hold a church wedding. The new church minister, Manu Sareen, had pre-

President and Publisher ejvind Sandal Chief executive Jesper nymark editor-in-Chief Kevin McGwin Managing editor Ben Hamilton news editor Justin Cremer Journalists Jennifer Buley & Peter Stanners

viously threatened to withdraw from the church in protest of its unwillingness to recognise gay marriage. His threat didn’t earn him any friends among the religious right-wing. “It’s on the verge of being a joke that they appoint him as minister of the church,” Henrik Højlund of the evangelical lutheran network

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KB Hallen should not be written off for dead just yet, reports Frederiksberg’s local newspaper. according to Denmark’s Heritage agency, the damages received in the September 28 fire are not so severe that the building cannot be saved. Heritage agency architect Tony Bødtker Munch studied the damages to the



Hope alive

One YeaR agO. nearly 40,000 students from all over denmark gather in Copenhagen to demonstrate against cutbacks in the education system.


THe STroKe of midnight on Saturday brought 136 years of history to a close, when the 25-øre coin ceased being valid currency. Introduced in 1875, the diminutive coin went out of circulation on 1 october 2008, but continued to be accepted at the nation’s banks until last Friday. a nationalbanken tally

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from earlier this year found that some 344 million 25-øre coins had yet to be returned. That adds up to a total value of 86 million kroner and an average of 61 unaccounted for coins per person. with the elimination of the 25-øre, the smallest denomination of coinage is now the 50-øre coin.

Layout and design Justin Cremer aviaja Bebe nielsen logo by rasmus Koch The Copenhagen Post accepts no responsibility for the content of material submitted by advertisers. The Copenhagen Post is published weekly by CPHPoST.DK apS Printed by Dagbladet, ringsted. all rights reserved. reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited by law.


The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011

no life sentences were given despite four requests by the prosecution


Peter stanners


heavy sentences in biker case



Engthy prison sentences were handed out to 15 members of the biker community, all with connections to the hells angels, by Copenhagen City Court last week on Thursday. The sentences concluded a lengthy court case against the bikers for their role in the gang war in Copenhagen’s nørrebro district. a prominent member of the hells angels, Brian Sandberg, received 11 years and ten months for planning one attempted murder, while his associate nick Leon hansen was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for four attempted murders. The shortest sentence of two years and nine months was given to an individual for calling in a false report of a shooting in amager while others carried out a shooting in nørrebro. another leading member of the hells angels, Dennis Brodthagen, who was wounded by a bullet during the gang war, received a sentence of 13 years imprisonment. The various charges facing the 15 members included six attempted murders and the possession of drugs and weapons. a large group of bikers gathered outside the courthouse in glostrup where the case was being tried due to space and security issues. The sentenced individuals are currently discussing with their defence teams whether to accept their sentences, appeal them to the high court, or ask for more time to consider their next move. The prosecution was able to build its case due to the unprecedented co-operation of a former member of the hells angels support group aK81 throughout the trials. The informant gave de-

Other countries want to know: will the ‘fat tax’ reduce the nation’s girth?

all eyes on ‘fat tax’ Prominent Hells Angel member Brian sandberg received 11 years and ten months

Bikers on the dole MOrE than half of the 1,170 people in Denmark with known connections to the hells angels and Bandidos biker gangs are on the dole. Some 593 members of biker gangs received 29,570,110 kroner in public assistance – in the form of cash benefits, disability and sick pay – in the first six months of this year, according to recent numbers from the tax administrator Skat.

tailed accounts of the members’ actions at the height of the gang war. The informant had already received a 12-year sentence for five attempted murders, but his sentence was reduced in exchange for his co-operation with the police. he has also helped the police in other completed cases and is expected to testify in the case of the august 2008 murder of a 19-year-old man in tingb-

Skat’s special gang unit was unsurprised by the latest numbers. “in our experience, we can see when we are out investigating them that bikers aren’t interested in getting jobs,” Vagn Pedersen, Skat’s gang unit leader, told B.t. tabloid. “it’s generally the kind of macho culture where they like to show off, but at the same time they’re not afraid to ask for public help.”

jerg, which is thought to have started off the gang war. Four requests by the prosecution for life sentences were rejected by the court. The longest sentence handed out, which was given to Danny Olsson, was 15 years and three months. attempted murder usually carries a sentence of six years, but tougher sentences were granted due to their gangrelated nature.

Life sentence upheld for danish citizen in Bahrain daughter of jailed activist says father should be released for treatment


Bahraini appeals court last week upheld the life sentence delivered this June to naturalised Dane and human rights activist abdulhadi al-Khawaja. al-Khawaja was one of 21 defendants who were sentenced, according to the BBC, for “forming a terrorist group to change the constitution and its monarchical system”, as well as inciting sectarian hatred, organising unlicensed protests and collaborating with a “terror group colluding with a foreign country”. al-Khawaja’s daughter Maryam, speaking to public broadcaster Dr at Copenhagen airport last week on Wednesday, spoke of her disappointment at the verdict. “it’s not as i’d hoped. i hoped that the judge would reduce his sentence or release my father. But that didn’t happen,” she said, before calling on the Danish government to place pressure on Bahrain to have him released. “My father is still ill after being tortured in prison. i hope we can have him released so that he can come to Denmark and be treated.” her father, who has been an outspo-

ken critic of Bahrain’s regime since the early 1980s, was granted political asylum in Denmark in 1991. Founder of the Bahrain human rights Organisation, he has worked with a range of organisations to promote human rights in Bahrain. he returned to the country in 2001 after 12 years in exile and co-founded the Bahrain Centre for human rights (BChr) the following year. al-Khawaja was arrested and released several times over the years for his human rights campaigning since his return to Bahrain. his life sentence in June, following his april arrest for organising protests across the country, effectively ended his career as a human rights campaigner. human rights organisation Front Line – which al-Khawaja worked with until February as an activist representing Middle East and north africa – issued a statement condemning the court’s decision. “From the moment abdulhadi was arrested to the time he was dragged into court for his trial, and now again today, he has faced arbitrary legal proceedings, torture and a military legal system intent on circumventing international legal standards,” Mary Lawlor, director of

My father is still ill after being tortured in prison Front Line Defenders said. “Front Line Defenders will continue to press for the release of abdulhadi and the dismissal of all charges against him.” according to the BChr, more than 40 protesters have been killed, 1,500 have been detained and 180 civilians have been sentenced since the uprising in Bahrain began in February of this year. The president and co-founder of the BChr, nabeel rajab, told metroXpress newspaper last week during a visit to Copenhagen that Denmark has a duty to actively support Bahraini’s opposing the regime. “Bahrainis are tired of all constant human rights violations. They just want to live like others in a democracy,” rajab said. “We are seeking help here because we are fighting, together with a Danish citizen, for the same rights that Danes have,” he added. “Denmark needs to take an open position and hopefully inspire other countries to do the same.” (PS)

Jennifer buley denmark’s ‘fat tax’ is the first of its kind – and the world will be watching the scales


n thE FirSt day of October, Danish families woke up to higher prices on butter, cream, cheese and other foods with lots of saturated fats when the country’s new ‘fat tax’ rolled into effect. But while Danes themselves took the change in stride, the tax garnered significant international attention. BBC news and the Daily telegraph in England, time magazine and CBS news in the US, and the arab-language news station al-Jazeera are just a few of the global media that took notice. The Copenhagen Post’s phone line even rang early on Monday morning with a call from radio station 6ix in Perth, australia, wanting to hear if there were riots on the streets. So, why was everyone so interested in little Denmark’s latest sin tax? While other countries have introduced taxes on sugar, Denmark is the first to introduce a specific tax on saturated fats with the goal of curbing obesity, reports Jyllands-Posten newspaper. health experts estimate that ten percent of Danes are obese, and that four percent of all annual deaths can be attributed to unhealthy eating habits. But obesity is an even bigger problem in other developed nations, which is why health specialists and policy makers around the globe want to see if Denmark’s precedent-setting ‘fat tax’ will actually have a slimming effect. The manager of Oxford University’s health Promotion research group, Mike rayner, is one expert who can’t wait to see the results – if any. “it’s the first ever fat-tax,” rayner told The Daily telegraph. “it’s very interesting. We haven’t had any practical examples before. now we will be able to see the effects for real.” rayner has campaigned to introduce sin taxes on unhealthy foods in England, where one-third of children and nearly two-thirds of adults are overweight, according to BBC news. in america, more than two-thirds of the adult population is considered overweight, and 34 percent are obese, reports the US Centers for Disease Control. according to time Magazine, these numbers are why america too will be watching Denmark carefully. “Could a tax like this fly in the US?”

The world will be watching denmark to see whether monetary incentive will make for a healthier nation wrote time. “We’ve seen improvements in healthier school lunches and all sorts of initiatives to encourage exercise and healthy eating for kids, but a nationwide tax on unhealthy foods would be the most drastic – and maybe most effective – measure in fighting obesity. The world will be watching Denmark to see whether monetary incentive will make for a healthier nation.” The fat tax amounts to a 16 kroner duty per solid kilo of saturated fat, but as most of us like our fat mixed with a few other ingredients, the actual price increase varies by food type. For example, a standard package of butter will now cost 18 kroner instead of 15.5, while half a kilo of 45 percent-fat cheese has gone from 34.5 kroner to over 36. Everything with more than 2.3 percent saturated fat per total weight – from staple ingredients to packaged cookies – is subject to the new price hike. The Danish agriculture and Food Council estimated that it will cost the average family with two adults and two children an extra 1,000 kroner per year if they continue to eat the way they did before the fat tax. The question on everyone’s mind is whether Danes will pay up or slim down – and what effect that will have on basic health and mortality. Lone Saaby, the director of business policy for the Danish agriculture and Food Council, for one, is sceptical. “i have a hard time seeing the health benefit of the fat tax,” she told Politiken newspaper. “They have levied duties on really normal basic foods like yogurt, liver pâté and other cold cuts with the Keyhole mark [a symbol designating ‘healthy’ foods], which were otherwise considered low-fat. it’s going to be difficult for consumers to get around the fat tax when they peer into the deli case.” Consumers are not the only ones who will feel the pinch. The Danish Chamber of Commerce estimates that small businesses will have to spend upwards of 100,000 to 300,000 kroner to update it-programs to deal with the complicated duty structure on all the fatty foods.


cover story

The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011

new cabinet. new policies. new government ready to roll IllustratIon by avIaja nIelsen

Peter StannerS social Liberals stand out as major winners in the coalition’s common governmental policy


ore than two weeks of secretive negotiations ended on Sunday night when helle Thorning-Schmidt met with the queen to ask to form a government. Thorning-Schmidt and the Social Democrats will lead a coalition that is joined by the Social Liberals and Socialist People’s Party (SF). each party’s allocation of the 23 cabinet seats roughly correlates to their relative share of the vote – eleven for the Social Dems and six each for the Social Libs and the SF. With three parties in government, a great deal of compromise was to be expected. and examining the ministerial positions, it’s clear that great effort was made to maintain balance. on economic issues, for instance, both the Social Libs and SF all have key posts – Social Lib leader Margrethe Vestager becomes economy and interior minister while the SF’s ole Sohn will head a new Growth and Business Ministry. Vestager’s role as economy and interior minister hands her considerable power over domestic politics. and with SF leader Villy Søvndal becoming foreign minister, each coalition party leader left the negotiation table at the head of a powerful ministry. But it is within the common government policy that the real compromises are to be found. With the Social Dems and SF running a joint election campaign, it was the addition of the Social Libs to the mix that drew out negotiations over the new government to almost three weeks and resulted in a few broken promises. The official common governmental policy, entitled ‘a Denmark that stands together’, revealed little that was not already expected. The previous government’s early retirement and pension reforms will stay in place despite Social Dem and SF opposition to them. The reforms increase the eligibility age of a state pension, while statefunded early retirement will be abolished, saving 18 billion kroner. Further concessions to the Social Liberals include the abandoning of the Socialist People’s Party’s ‘millionaire tax’ while the Social Democrats’ proposal to get Danes working an extra 12 minutes a day was also scrapped. But it wasn’t entirely one way traffic – the Social Liberals have dropped their opposition to the 24-year immigration rule, which will remain for at least the first term of the new government.

TO DO LIST Immigration:

Foreign Policy:

points - Eliminate the former government’s

- Get military out of Afghanistan by 2014

system for family REunIFICATIon

- Work towards having Palestine reco

- Eliminate Immigration Ministry


as a state

- Keep the 24-year rule - Keep, but modify, the attachment requ - Eliminate reduced social welfare

- Require 2/3 of parliament to vote in



before sending troops into combat


for new immigrants - Allow asylum seekers to live and wor



outside asylum centres after 6 months

- ‘Kickstart’ economy through 10 billio

- Allow dual citizenship

kroner of public works


te, - Grants for businesses working on clima energy or welfare technology

Tax: - Reform taxes to minimise social

- Create more workplaces through

inequality & reduce poverty

increased public spending

- Reduced taxes on workplaces


- Increase tax on cigarettes and

- Create a congestion zone in Copenhag

unhealthy food


- Increase airfare tax

Workplace: - Keep the former govern


- MAKE FuEL-EFFICIEnT CARS MoRE AFFo - Road pricing for lorries

ment’s increase of

the pension age and eliminat

e state-funded early

- Cheaper rail and bus fares

retirement programme

ent bEnEFIT PERIoD - Add 6 months to unemploym nce placements for - Create new work experie young people

and work conditions - Ensure that Danish salary apply at all Danish workplac


Climate & Environment: - 40% reduction in carbon emissions by 2020 - Source Half of Denmark’s energy from

Health: - Ensure faster treatment for cancer

and other life-

threatening illnesses i isation of psychiatry - Increase priort - Change treatment guarantee from

1 month to

between 1-2 months, depending on the


es - Investigate need for more ambulanc health insurance - Eliminate tax deduction for private

wind by 2020 - Tighten regulation on emissions by farmers - Remove dangerous chemicals from food and children’s toys

Primary school: - Limit class sizes to 24 children, only if

money can be

found in budget - Implement, on a trial basis, the SF prop

osal to place

two teachers in the classroom

The full common policy (Regeringsgrundlag) can be downloaded at (in Danish only)



7 - 13 October 2011

Young, fresh faces make up cabinet Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt (S)

Economy and Interior Minister Margrethe Vestager (R)

Foreign Affairs Minister Villy Søvndal (SF)

Finance Minister Bjarne Corydon (S)

At 44, Denmark’s first female PM is also the youngest in 63 years. She’ll need that youthful energy to hold together her coalition.

The Social Liberals’ leader is seen by many as the election’s big winner and will be the de facto Number Two in the new govt.

As a widely mocked YouTube video suggests, Søvndal will have to brush up on his English before venturing out into the world.

Being elected to a power ministry as a freshman MP is unheard of, but Corydon was the Soc Dem’s chief strategist and policy maker.

Justice Minister Morten Bødskov (S)

Tax Minister Thor Möger Pedersen (SF)

Social Affairs & Integration Minister Karen Hækkerup (S)

Health Minister Astrid Krag (SF)

Rewarded for political loyalty, the new PM’s right-hand man will be responsible for overhauling immigration regulations.

One of the architects of the SF’s 2007 election surge, the 26-yearold is the youngest ever minister. He’s viewed as SF’s future leader.

A member, by marriage, of the Hækkerup political dynasty, the 37-year-old is looking forward to a “new era and new policies”.

As deputy chairperson for SF, Krag was a shoe-in for a ministerial post. The 29-year-old is married to rapper AndyOp.

European Affairs Minister Nicolai Wammen (S)

Environment Minister Ida Auken (SF)

Church & Gender Equality Minister Manu Sareen (R)

Science Minister Morten Østergaard (R)

As EU minister, the former mayor of Aarhus will be spending more time in foreign capitals than Copenhagen.

Auken, 33, will be the second person in her family to head the Environment Ministry, following her uncle, Svend.

With Sareen’s appointment, he becomes the first ethnic minority to serve as a minister. He will also handle Nordic co-operations.

A proponent of IT and digitalisation, Østergaard will feel at home at the Science, Innovation and Higher Education Ministry.

ANY SHIFT of governmental power is by definition a historic event. But the government presented by Helle ThorningSchmidt on Monday included many ‘firsts’ for Denmark. In addition to the nation’s first female prime minister, the cabinet also includes its youngest ever member in 26-year-old Thor Möger Pedersen and the first minister with an immigrant background in Manu Sareen. The 23 ministers have an average age of just 43, the youngest in Europe.

All but two ministers – Margrethe Vestager and Henrik Dam Kristensen – are new to the halls of power and five – Möger Pedersen, Bjarne Corydon, Uffe Elbæk, Christian Friis Bach, and Martin Lidegaard – are new to Christiansborg. The cabinet consists of 14 men and nine women, falling short of the stated goal of an equal gender balance. The Social Dems have eleven ministers, while the Socialist People’s Party and Social Liberals have six each. (JC)

The rest of the team: Development Minister: Christian Friis Bach (R) Culture Minister: Uffe Elbæk (R) Business and Growth Minister: Ole Sohn (SF) Defence Minister: Nick Hækkerup (S) Transportation Minister: Henrik Dam Kristensen (S) Employment Minister: Mette Frederiksen (S) Urban, Rural, and Housing Minister: Carsten Hansen (S) Climate Minister: Martin Lidegaard (R) Children and Youth Minister: Christine Antorini (S) Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Minister: Mette Gjerskov (S) Export and Foreign Trade Minister: Pia Olsen Dyhr (SF)


ough revision and softening of the rules affecting children’s family reunification; and eased requirements for permanent residency and naturalisation, including – notably – the new possibility of dual citizenship. Lawyer Åge Kramp, an expert in immigration law, approved of what he read in the new government’s common policy. “It seems like the motives are good, and it’s also creative,” Kramp told The Copenhagen Post, noting that the S-R-SF coalition had borrowed some ideas from Sweden’s successful asylum and citizenship programmes. “And, psychologically, the effect of dividing the ministry’s work up into different departments shows that this government doesn’t see immigration as a problem.” Before Monday’s surprise announcement, it was easy to forget that Denmark did not always have an Immigration Ministry or a combustible immigration debate. The Immigration Ministry was, in fact, created at the end of 2001, when the Liberal-Conservative government came to power. The government allowed the DF to drive the country’s immigration and refugee policies in exchange for its support on financial policy, among other areas. The Social Dems and Socialist People’s Party made few objections, even voting for some of the new restrictions. That led many to wonder whether immigration policies would actually change under the new left-ofcentre government. The Social Liberals, with their powerful position in the new coalition, and the government’s farleft support party, the Red-Green Alliance, are mostly credited with the dramatic political changes in the field of immigration. But not everyone is welcoming the change. The outgoing immigration minister, Søren Pind of the Liberals, said the rules would lead to mass immigration and welfare abuse. “It’s going to be open borders and open tills. We’ll see a

Social Democrat-Social LiberalSocialist People’s Party coalition on Monday. But at the same time as she extended a hand to the opposition, Thorning-Schmidt said she accepted that the task of governing “won’t be easy”. “We’re going to have to work hard, and we’re going to have to make tough decisions,” she said. Many of those first decisions will be about the economy. Among the points of order for the new government during this session of parliament will be to bring the economy out of the slump that began in 2007 with the global credit crunch. Since then, unemployment has doubled to 7.1 percent and

the budget deficit is expected to swell to a projected 85 billion next year, after reaching a surplus of 82 billion kroner in 2006. ThorningSchmidt proposed that her government would seek to turn those figures Thorning-Schmidt called on parliament to around by making work together to solve the country’s problems changes to tax regua close was just the first step in a lations, reforming a number of social welfare benefit “gigantic task”. “Our goal is a balanced programmes, and creating jobs budget by 2020. That’s an amthrough public investments. Even if those policies suc- bitious goal, but it’s necessary. ceeded, the new PM warned that We can’t let the economy fall bringing the economic slump to apart again.” (KM)

more car (rental) for less... SCANPIX


EWLY-ELECTED PM Helle Thorning-Schmidt began her term in office on Tuesday by calling on the opposition to work together with the government to help solve the country’s problems. “I want to bring back broadbased co-operation,” she told the opening session of the 179-member legislature. “We are the government for all of Denmark.” “It’s only by working together that we can pull Denmark through these tough times. Denmark needs us to stick together.” Thorning-Schmidt wound up using the word “co-operation” 18 times during an address that reiterated the content of the common policy released by the

rise in the number of [immigrants] on public benefits. And the part about getting rid of the points system – that means that the Anatolian Plateau [in Turkey] will be moving in,” Pind told Berlingske newspaper. Pind’s remarks hint that changing the tone of the immigration debate will take more than a manifesto and abolishing a controversial ministry. While Pind, the Liberals, and the DF are now the opposition, they are still a very powerful one. Besides the rule changes, the S-R-SF coalition is promising more transparency and accountability in the administration of cases. “The laws will be clear and fair, the administration transparent and predictable. Regularity and respect are the foundation for integration,” their common policy states. Transparency and regularity are two things the now-disbanded Immigration Ministry was not particularly known for. In March, the then immigration minister Birthe Rønn Hornbech was fired after it was revealed that she had directed ministry staff to reject citizenship applications from nearly 400 young people of Palestinian heritage who were born and raised in Denmark, despite being aware that doing so violated the UN convention on stateless children’s rights. The ministry came under strong criticism from the UN and the EU for failing to uphold human rights, and the UN launched an independent inquiry. With rule changes almost every year – sometimes twice in a year – and residency approvals and rejections based on subjective criteria such as ‘potential to integrate’ and ‘attachment to Denmark’, the ministry’s case handling was all the more opaque. That background was the elephant in the room when Hækkerup addressed the employees of the just-dissolved Immigration Ministry for the first time on Monday. “Now we have a new era, new politics, a new majority, and a new will,” she told them. “We want to change the negative debate that’s been happening.”

continued from front page

PM’s opening speech stresses co-operation


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The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011

Forerunners point out obstacles on road to congestion charge Two cities with congestion charges say clear communication key to winning public support


it only takes a small change by a lot of people for there to be a noticeable impact retracted earlier this year). The list of exempt vehicles is also constantly being updated. But none of these changes were sprung on an unsuspecting public as the scheme requires that changes can only be introduced after a public consultation. “everybody who is going to be affected can feed into this process and this often changes the policies. We need to take account of all the needs and interests of the people who are affected by the scheme,” kennedy said. “It’s under regular review and obviously it needs to be flexible to be able to respond to the market place.” understanding the effect the zone will have on the public and letting them know about it was central to its success, kennedy argued – from the price, to its extent, and which groups were exempt. “We have to understand how people will change their journeys and communicate it while also working towards the right degree of exemptions, such as buses and motorbikes that don’t contribute to congestion.” Transparent decision making and clear communicating are the two main lessons to be learnt from london – with

It costs about 100 kr to enter the City of London’s congestion charging zone during peak hours

unpopular proposals the least you can do is keep the public informed. But how do you get people to see the bright side and not just learn to live with it? The Stockholm Congestion Tax came into effect in August 2007 and charges drivers who enter the city, with higher fees during rush hour and no fee during the night. But well before the tax was introduced, they had worked on expanding public transport and building park-and-ride facilities (parking facilities near out-of-town train stations). “We wanted traffic to be reduced by 10 to 15 percent in order for it to be successful, and we experienced a drop of between 15 and 18 percent,” eva Söderberg said, adding that it wasn’t until the congestion tax was implemented that people started to swap over. “It goes to show that people don’t use them unless there’s an extra incentive. Simply having more buses available isn’t going to mean people will use them.” getting people to change their lifestyle will never be easy, Söderberg argued, so combining good alternatives with a clear message about the benefits of the tax is the best way to win people over. “People think their whole lives will get worse because they have to park and ride every day. But it only takes a small change by a lot of people for there to be a noticeable impact. So not everyone needs to park every day for the traffic to change,” she argued. “It’s important to focus on the benefits rather than the difficulties and we can all benefit. Businesses serving the park and ride facilities benefit as do the drivers who can shop closer to home. I think it’s a benefit to read a paper on

GooGle maps/social democrats

RIvINg in denmark isn’t cheap. With a vehicle registration tax that can easily amount to over 150 percent of a car’s initial value and some of the highest petrol prices in europe, owning a car is an expensive habit. But danish drivers might soon find themselves having to pay even more if Copenhagen’s long discussed congestion charge becomes a reality. While supporters argue it will reduce traffic and air pollution while raising money to reinvest in public transport, the press has been less than impressed. A selection of criticisms contend that it would result in increased traffic in neighbourhoods just outside the boundary and make businesses that require driving in and out of the city untenable. And it goes on. only a third of danes would vote for it, a recent Jyllands-Posten study showed; experts have questioned whether it would significantly reduce air pollution; and the danish Construction Association calculated it would take 13 years for it to return a profit. Further criticism focused on the choice of name for the scheme, the ‘payment ring’ (‘betalingsring’), which many argued emphasised the negative (having to pay) rather than the positive (reduced traffic and pollution and a revenue stream to reinvest in public transport). despite its detractors, the congestion charge is a priority of the new Social democrat-led government, meaning that in a few years time drivers entering the city will probably be paying to do so. Copenhagen city planners will then be faced with a real battle convincing the cynics that while the charge punishes drivers, the rest of the city will benefit as a result. how does the city best sell that message? The Copenhagen Post spoke to Transport for london (Tfl) and the Swedish Transport Agency to hear about their experiences introducing the charges and the advice they might give to Copenhagen’s city planners. london’s congestion charge is widely regarded as being an enormous success. It too faced massive opposition with opponents claiming the city would become a traffic dead-zone while the central london borough of Westminster sued the government to prevent the plans from coming into effect. Westminster lost and london now charges drivers about 80 kroner to enter the city centre. That, according to

Tfl spokesperson Samantha kennedy, resulted in an immediate 20 percent reduction in traffic, where it has remained ever since. “There was quite a lot of foreboding in the press and fear that it would empty out central london but that didn’t prove to be the case,” kennedy explained. “eighty-five percent of londoners were already using public transport to enter the city centre so we did a lot of work to supplement public transport before we introduced the charge so people could move over easily.” london’s congestion zone charges non-exempt vehicles (such as taxis, ambulances and electric cars) entering the congestion zone between 7am and 6pm. Cars are registered entering the zone using number plate recognition cameras with vehicle owners paying a daily fee of between £9 and £12 (about 80-100 kr) depending on the time of day and method of payment. In comparison, Copenhagen plans to charge drivers a peak rate of 25 kroner to enter or leave the city. The zone has changed since it was first introduced, with the charge rising from £4 in 2003 to the current £10, while the zone was also extended to cover western london (which was


peter stanners

During the election campaign, the social Democrats proposed a ring around the city that largely mirrored Ring Road 2

the train. And those who have no alternative but to drive will benefit because they can travel faster into the city.” The success of the ‘payment ring’ may just come down to how well it’s spun to Copenhagen commuters – though it might already be too late. A recent article in Politiken argued that the zone had been terribly communicated to the public. But that’s not the only communication problem the zone has faced. When the Social democrats and Socialist People’s Party finally released details about the zone before the September

election, it was pitched as a final plan. But mayor Frank Jensen has since stated the zone’s cost and placement are still up for debate, putting the government on the back foot and making the whole idea look badly thought out and untrustworthy. The congestion tax remains a key piece of legislation in the new government’s common policy, however, and will probably go ahead despite its problems. But those are problems that very possibly have been avoided if they’d have been clear, listened and focused on the positives.

Online This week shady associations sink leading social dem’s career heNRIk Sass larsen, a leading Social democrat, failed a PeT security check and stepped down as the party’s political spokesperson. larsen, who was to be the next finance minister, said the reason was that he had once met with the prominent leader of a biker gang who asked for his help in a child-custody case. however, var-

ious sources, including a former PeT boss, said there had to be more to the case than that. later revelations indicated that it was larsen’s friendship with Tommy kamp, a former chairman from køge Council who was suspected of fraud and extortion, that is likely to be the real reason he failed the security check.

Tree gets temporary stay of execution AN eSTImATed 400 people gathered in enghave Plads Square last week on Wednesday evening to pay their respects to a 114-year-old tree that was scheduled to be chopped down to make way for a new underground station. Sawing was scheduled to begin at 7pm but a couple of dozen activists

changed their plans. Protesters blocked the metroselskabet tree-cutters and their tractors from getting to kastanjen. metroselskabet, which operates the city’s underground railway, and the police decided to let the protesters have their way – albeit temporarily. early on Tuesday morning, the tree was cut down.

City pays man billion kroner for load of sand Who Would have thought that being a deliveryman could make you a billionaire? After delivering a load of sand to a kindergarten in Copenhagen, one dump truck owner almost became just that. This June, instead of receiving the arranged 4,500 kroner, his account was credited with 957,072,606.57

kroner. “We are not very proud of it I have to admit, but it made a few of us smile,” Jesper Rønnow Simonsen from the City Council told B.T. tabloid. The lucky driver didn’t manage to cash in on his good fortune, however, as the council’s bank, Nordea, quickly discovered the error.



7 - 13 October 2011


Committee: Overhaul newspaper subsidies Child porn filter stops Free daily papers set to lose out the most as state considers revisions to media funding


TATE funding for the nation’s media is set for a major shake-up after a committee called for the current practice of subsidising distribution to be scrapped in favour of subsidies based on news content. The report – published by the state-run Danish Agency for Libraries and Media – states that media subsidies require a rethink as a result of the diversification of news platforms due to the internet. “The internet has created new conditions,” it stated. “Printed dailies are losing subscribers and advertising money. If the trend continues – that daily paper subscribers become older and fewer – then the future is negative. This is especially a problem because daily papers deliver 71 percent of the original news our global insight is dependent on.” As a result, the agency has proposed that subsidies previously given to support the distribution of printed publications – including The Copenhagen Post – should instead be used to support the production of high quality and original content across a variety of platforms. “The purpose of public me-

dia subsidies in Denmark is to support the media’s democratic, critical and independent function in regard to the freedom of speech and information,” the report states. “Focusing on supporting content will mean that new and unknown media platforms will receive support, while established media platforms will be supported in disseminating their content as widely as possible.” Most daily newspapers will receive additional funding under the proposed subsidy shakeup, with Denmark’s three main dailies – Berlingske, Politiken and Jyllands-Posten – each receiving five percent increases amounting to 20 million kroner each per year. The biggest losers, however, are set to be the free daily papers such as metroXpress and 24timer, which will lose almost 14 million kroner each under the new proposed subsidies – a cut of 27 percent. The media last week claimed the proposal to cut subsidies to the free papers would have dramatic social implications. “Free papers reach groups who would otherwise not read newspapers,” Jørgen Poulsen from Roskilde University told Politiken. “They have an important democratic function.” Søren Riis, the managing director of metroXpress, told Politiken that losing the subsidy

20,000 in September



Police say internet block stops casual surfers, but free speech advocates fear censorship

L Free papers 24timer and metroXpress stand to be the biggest losers

Distribution support WEEKLY and daily newspapers as well as magazines can all apply for distribution subsidies under legislation that came into effect in 2007. By accepting the subisidy the newspapers remain entirely independent from the government and are not rewould mean they would have to stop their daily distribution of 30,000 copies outside major metropolitan areas. Approximately 400 million kroner is currently distributed between magazines and daily and weekly newspapers to cover distribution costs. But under the new system, the money would be reallocated according to the number of journalists at the var-

quired to produce or omit any content as a result. The newspapers do have to fulfill certain criteria to qualify, however. For example, at least half of a daily newspaper’s content has to be original – half of which must relate to society, politics or culture. ious eligible publications – the larger the news staff the greater the subsidy. The changes would mean that the three main dailies – which produce the vast majority of original news and media content – would receive extra support to improve and subsidise their online platforms that are otherwise struggling to generate income.

AST MONTH, some 20,000 Danish internet users were blocked by a child pornography filter created by police in 2005 together with Save the Children Denmark and telecom TDC. In addition to denying access to blacklisted sites, the filter also generates a message stating that it is illegal to view child pornography. Deputy police inspector Johnny Lundberg, head of the police’s National IT Investigation Centre (NITEC), told Bernlingske newspaper that the monthly number of hits received by the blocked pages is relatively stable, though it is somewhat higher than last September, when NITEC registered 17,700 users who were blocked by the filter. He said that in addition to those intentionally looking for child pornography, the filter also stopped people who are surfing for regular pornography and encounter child pornography, as well as people who are accidentally led to such sites. According to Lundberg, the police are working together with “the majority” of Danish

internet providers. He also said the filter currently blocks access to 1,150 websites – down from 1,400 last year. He added that the filter was mostly aimed at stopping casual searches for child pornography. “The people who are technically savvy and search aggressively for child pornography typically search other websites. We go after them as part of international investigations.” Save the Children called the filter a success, not least because it makes it clear that viewing child pornography is illegal. “Twenty thousand users is 20,000 too many, but this has an effect in the fight against child pornography even though it’s clearly not enough,” said Save the Children psychologist Kuno Sørensen. The IT Political Association, an internet freedom advocacy group, is worried, however, that internet service providers have been forced to install the filter. “That would be censorship, and it would be without any sort of democratic or legal oversight,” said association president Niels Elgaard Larsen. “Obviously noone will defend child pornography. But this is purely symbolic. Nothing suggests that you are actually fighting child pornography with this filter.” (JW)

Women and Men are we equal.. ...What does Islam say?

The rights and responsibilities of women are equal to those of men but they are not necessarily identical. We should understand this as men and women are different, in their physical and psychological make-up. With these characteristics in mind, there is no room for a Muslim to imagine that women are inferior to men. Perhaps it is more correct to comment that the Islamic approach on gender relations, is one of “equity” rather than the commonly used word “equality”, which could

be misunderstood to mean equal in every aspect of life, rather than overall equality. Thus, in the Islamic tradition, a woman has an independent identity. She is a responsible being in her own right and carries the burden of her moral and spiritual obligations. A woman has the right to accept or reject marriage proposals, and her consent is a prerequisite to the validity of the marriage contract. A marriage is based on mutual peace, love and compassion. Dr. Jamal Badawi, a Canadian Islamic scholar, states in his book Gender Equity in Islam: “The husband is responsible for the maintenance, protection and overall leadership of the family within the framework of consultation and kindness. The mutuality and complementarity of husband and wife does not mean ‘subservience’ by either party to the other. This means that he should consult her in family matters such as raising the children. If she works outside the home, she has the right to her earnings, to save or use as she pleases, as the husband has the full responsibility of financial support for the family. She has the right to own property, divorce, inherit from the birth of Islam. A little forgotten fact is that these rights did not become law in Europe until the late 1800s. Islam was far ahead of the times. To read more go to

More articles in • Accessible learning opportunities that change attitudes. • Discovering the beauty of Islam. • Women in Islam. • Muhammad and Jesus Two great Prophets of God. • Love for Children. • Investing our time wisely. • Goethe and Islam. • Tolstoy and Prophet Muhammad. • Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi: A Human for All Times. • Europe Experiences with Islam




An ounce of prevention is of worth a pound of fat

7 - 13 October 2011

Where do we go from the world championships?


HAT’S MORE Danish than a Danish pastry? Taxes, of course. For those familiar with Danish politics, it should come as no surprise that a majority in parliament voted in favour of implementing a ‘fat tax’ this year in order to get people to consume less saturated fats. Regardless of political stripe, lawmakers turn to taxes (or levies, as they are often known) as their tool of choice when seeking to modify people’s behaviour – be that driving, smoking, drinking cola or wasting water. What is surprising is that the world’s first ‘fat tax’ has been adopted in a country known more for its healthy lifestyle than for its girth. Danes are slightly below the EU obesity average of 15 percent, and they are significantly lighter than Americans, whose obesity rate is 33 percent. But even with all the cycling, the healthy dark rye bread and the slender figures, life expectancies here lag behind other European countries. In the 1950s Denmark had one of the world’s highest life expectancies; today it ranks at the bottom of developed countries. There could be any number of reasons for the slide, but diet is certainly a factor. And with sin taxes already in place on tobacco, alcohol and sugar – as well as a full ban on trans-fatty acids – there’s no reason why there shouldn’t also be a disincentive to consuming saturated fats, given their link to heart disease. The state deserves credit for trying to do something to improve our health, but it should listen closely to the voices of economists, who question the fat tax’s effectiveness in influencing people’s behaviour, and nutrition experts, who question the types of fatty foods that get taxed. If the state really is serious about influencing people’s fatconsumption habits, instead of just punishing them each time they indulge, it should raise the tax to a prohibitive level, exempt healthier fatty foods such as olive oil and lean meat, and make it cheaper to buy fruits and vegetables. Another shortcoming of this fat tax is that there is no requirement for how the 130 million kroner it will generate should be spent. It would only make sense to use the funds on programmes to encourage healthy lifestyles, but there is no obligation to do so. Given the 85 billion kroner hole in the budget, it’s easy to understand why lawmakers turned to a tax hike instead of a tax cut. But with the state responsible for footing the bill to treat lifestyle-related illnesses, the short-term cost of making it cheaper to live healthier is an investment the country can live with.

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YCLING’S Road Racing World Championships have come and gone and they were a huge success for Copenhagen. Walking the car-less streets of the capital, I met cheerful residents, enthusiastic visitors, pleased cyclists, appreciative International Cycling Union organisers, and proud Danish politicians and other public officials. I’ve read the articles in the foreign press, and they all describe us as the city we are – and want to be – green, open and modern.

year since. Copenhagen now has the ability to put on the biggest of shows: in recent years, we’ve seen the construction of new hotels and congress centres. Development of the Ørestad district has seen the addition of hundreds of new housing units. The same is true in Nordhavnen and Sluseholmen. And soon, we’ll be adding an arena. My hope for the coming years is that we can garner the political and financial support necessary to attract more major events to the city. As it stands right now, no such event is in the works. The cycling world championships helped us broadcast positive stories to the world. And the next event in its class I would like the city to go after is the World Water Forum, one of the world’s biggest sustainable development events. Copenhagen would be the perfect backdrop for an event focusing on water – an increasingly scarce resource. Denmark’s experiences in this

Copenhagen has been transformed into a world-class tourism destination that has seen the number of people coming here increase almost every year area could help towards alleviating the problem. It is my hope that Copenhagen and the new government will be able to work with other groups interested in promoting the city to iron out a strategy for attracting more international mega events to the capital. The author is the managing director of Wonderful Copenhagen

READER COMMENTS Cycling fines I was fined for cycling on a pedestrian crossing last week. Although I know I was in the wrong, I must have done this thousands of times with impunity and now I am worried about getting stopped and fined for something that I am unaware of. Police were gathered at places where they knew they’d catch people doing wrong things: at pedestrian crossings that they know people cycle across or at red lights where they know cyclists don’t stop or turn right. I assume that they have targets on certain days and they must have made a fortune last week as one person after another was stopped for doing something that they do habitually. I’m not condoning breaking the rules. But I think that the rules themselves and the punishment for breaking them should be made clearer and that there should be signs on the cycle lines warning people. As I was issued a 500kr fine, I saw another foreigner (non-resident) in a police car. This guy needed to pay the 500kr immediately and didn’t have it on him. Denmark is already struggling with its image with regard to how it welcomes foreigners. Having an armed police officer force a foreigner to get 500kr to pay a fine for a cycling infraction seems aggressive. As I say, my point is about informing people of the rules and penalties. I’m not questioning the rules themselves. Luke Valentine By email Race intelligence professor accused of dishonesty

It is my honest belief that major events are necessary for stimulating growth and attracting guests, investments and workers to our city. Major events can also energise the city, increase business for its merchants, and show the world that we’re a city that is worth taking an interest in. This was the case during the 2009 UN climate conference. It was the case during the IOC Congress that same year and it was also the case back in 1996, when Copenhagen was Europe’s Cultural Capital. That year was the year we began to change the way we looked at our city. Copenhagen went from being a tired little city to an attractive metropolis. That year, we added Arken and the Black Diamond to our list of attractions. And since then, more performing arts centres have opened. All of a sudden, Copenhagen has been transformed into a world-class tourism destination that has seen the number of people coming here increase almost every

Nyborg has never claimed that men are more intelligent than women or that some ethnic groups are simply more intelligent than others. He has referred to mean or average statistical dif-

ferences between groups. This does not imply anything about given individuals. This means that there is still significant overlap between different population distributions. This can be significant at the tails of the distribution one would find discrepancies. For example, the mean difference in height between men and women may be smaller than the difference between the tallest man and the shortest man. However, if you look at people above 6’ 5”, a greater proportion may be men because of the slight average difference. Note also that Nyborg found that men have a greater distribution of scores, so there are actually a greater number of men at the lower end of the distribution than women. Surely if you’re going to report on controversial research you owe a duty to your readers and your newspaper to accurately report what is being claimed? Also, it makes it appear you are trying to portray the researcher in the worst manner possible by misrepresenting his apparent position. Julian Castle By email Nyborg claims you can measure intelligence with a tape measure around the head! Why, elephants must be the most intelligent of them all! He must have meant that other white people are intellectually superior – he surely cannot have included himself. Given how so many white people are dishonest, maybe Helmuth could look into researching (or copy/ pasting, whatever he feels most comfortable with), the genetic basis of being a lying liar. Seasonticket By website I enjoyed the irony of this fool having the title “intelligence researcher” since he has none of the former and has done none of

the latter. shufflemoomin

By website

Andre the Giant must have been a friggin genius... tomnashdk By website There is in fact a well established link between brain size and measured cognitive ability. Yale psychologist Jeremy Gray and UCLA Neuroscientist Paul Thompson write: “Correlations between intelligence and total brain volume or grey matter volume have been replicated in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies, to the extent that intelligence is now commonly used as a confounding variable in morphometric studies of disease. MRI-based studies estimate a moderate correlation between brain size and intelligence of 0.40 to 0.51.” M Schwartz By website M Schwartz, you seem to either know a great deal about this rather obscure (aka completely unknown!) research or you are prepared to dedicate a lot of time looking this stuff up. I propose that you are either Helmuth Nyborg himself or possibly his mother. Exiled By website Forced co-operation in custody Firstly, it has always been my understanding that all adults whether a parent or not, have a legal responsibility to report any suspected incidents of child abuse to the police. Once reported, it is then the responsibility of the police to investigate and take whatever appropriate action is necessary to safeguard a child from harm. Reporting suspected incident(s) and/ or accusation(s)  to the ‘Family court’ as a means to address child abuse is not the correct action, as the lawyer in the article found

out on behalf of her client. Family court Judges through the Parental Responsibility Act are duly bound to enact  family law - especially emphasising the shared custody principle, which in my opinion is far better than the custody principle in the previous law. The new law gives all children  regardless of their ethnicity the right to be heard from eight years of age by the social service department and at ten years of age to  personally seek a change in the visitation protocol if they are not pleased with their living arrangements with either parent.  Chris Parker By email I personally know both of the women written about in this article. I have seen the bruises on the children, I have talked to the children, and I have upon multiple occasions hidden them all in my house for several days at a time to protect them. The Copenhagen Post did the best job they could here with what they could verify from multiple sources, but the reality is far more brutal than this article lets on. Several of these cases have been accepted for review and investigation by the EU Human Rights Commission, and seven foreign embassies in Copenhagen have opened investigations into the treatment of their citizens by the Danish authorities. In two of those cases, the foreign mother was given joint custody of her children, but the Danish immigration authorities then deported her for not having a job and therefore “sucking off the social system”. So Denmark in effect ripped the kids away from the foreign mother and sent the mother back to the home country. What is described here in this article is the tip of the iceberg of Danish systematic discrimination against foreigners. tomnashdk By website



7 - 13 October 2011


Still Adjusting BY JUSTIN CREMER A proud native of the American state of Iowa, Justin Cremer has been living in Copenhagen since June 2010. In addition to working at the CPH Post, he balances fatherhood, struggling with the Danish language and keeping up with the everchanging immigration rules. Follow him at

Service sorely lacking from national health system


HEN WRITING an opinion column only once every five weeks, the long intervals provide no shortage of potential topics to tackle. Since I last graced this page, the interminable waiting for an election was replaced by the interminable waiting for a new government, Denmark continued to show its warm and fuzzy approach to immigration by threatening to send an eight-year-old child alone to Bangladesh, and collective hissy fits were thrown over a proposed congestion charge and the freedom for women to whip out their breasts in public. Any of these would have provided ample fodder for a column, yet all were completely overshadowed by what happened on September 6. While it didn’t make headlines, it made everything else going on around me suddenly seem not all that important. For it was on that day that I welcomed my daughter into this world. Aside from the usual joy and challenges everyone experiences when having a new child, my daughter’s birth also provided me with my first real taste of Denmark’s public health system. Owing to complications with the birth of our son, our daughter was born via a planned caesarean at Herlev Hospital. Despite being told the day before that we would be the last of five scheduled c-sections that day, my wife was ordered to fast from 2am, abstain from drinking after 6am, and to arrive at the hospital no later than 7am based on a far-flung scenario in which several of the pregnant women scheduled before us might just happen to go into labour overnight (even though c-sections are scheduled a week to ten days before the due date). We dutifully arrived bright and early

Heading to the hospital? Be prepared to wait.

– my wife is Danish, after all, so following orders is in her DNA – and proceeded to wait. And wait. As the day progressed towards noon, we received not a single bit of information – or so much as a cursory check-in – until I tracked down a nurse and demanded an update only to find that just one of the five csections had taken place. We were given a shabby room that we had to share with another couple and, after much wrangling and pleading, my wife was given permission to drink some liquids. Several more hours passed with no contact from the staff until we were told that we would have to wait until the evening shift arrived. Finally, at around 4pm, after nine solid hours of

waiting, it was go time. The procedure itself went fine – easy for me to say as I wasn’t the one having a baby pulled through a hole in my abdomen – and we were soon back in the room, new baby in tow. And how did we get to spend the first few intimate moments of our new child’s life? By sharing it with complete strangers on the other side of a flimsy curtain. Coincidentally, at the same time we were at Herlev, a friend arrived for a recommended medical procedure only to sit in a waiting room for over 12 hours awaiting an available surgeon. As she sat there, a child in the room became ill and vomited on the floor. The receptionists allowed the vomit to

sit there for nearly an hour, causing an irate patient – who undoubtedly had also been staring at the same four walls for most of the day – confronted them about how unprofessional and unsanitary it was to allow the fowl stench to linger and permeate the air. Their response was predictably bureaucratic, saying that they had notified cleaning staff. Apparently at no point did it cross the mind of the supposed health professionals to take care of the mess themselves. The ‘sit around and wait’ approach must apply to employees as well as patients. It’s a problem not confined to Herlev. Recently, a colleague’s husband went to Køge Hospital for knee sur-

gery and spent the better part of the day waiting for his operation, with no updates from the staff, only to have the operation ultimately moved to the next day due to a lack of staff. Despite the steady flow of tax money funding the healthcare system, it has seen massive firings and cutbacks, leaving those left in the nation’s hospitals and doctor’s offices stretched too thin. Residents throughout the country are forced to travel longer distances as hospitals close their doors or shut down units. Horror stories of long waiting lists and patients forced to receive care in the hallways are rampant, and there is the grim reality that survival rates for serious diseases like cancer are among the worst in the Western world. It was with great irony then, that on my first night home from the hospital, the election debate had turned to focus on the healthcare system. I couldn’t help but chuckle at Villy Søvndal as he proposed that the nation’s healthcare problems could all be fixed by raising taxes on junk food and cigarettes. Ignoring for a moment the fact that raising prices on cigarettes would just lead to more people crossing the border to buy their smokes (I saw the same thing happen at home when smokers crossed the border into Missouri in their droves to avoid paying Iowa’s $1.36 per pack tax), it will take a lot more than pricier cigs, chips and chocolates to fix what ails Denmark’s healthcare system. Besides, after seeing the level of service our already incredibly high taxes gets us, the last thing I was left thinking was: Gee, wouldn’t it be great if we could give even more of our money to the state? On the contrary, I was left with the nagging question: This is what a 50 percent tax burden gets us?






Born in 1942 on the Isle of Wight, Englishman Frank Theakston has been in Copenhagen 32 years and is on his second marriage to a Dane. Frank comes from a different time and a different culture – which values are the right ones today?

Clare MacCarthy is Nordic correspondent for The Economist and a frequent contributor to The Financial Times and The Irish Times. She’ll go anywhere from the Gobi Desert to the Arctic in search of a story. The most fascinating thing about Denmark, she says, is its contradictions.

Celia Thaysen is a British love refugee who landed on these shores six years ago. With below-par Danish, a tendency to tardiness, and a fondness for Marmite, she spends her time fumbling her way through unfamiliar territory as a working mother-of-two with a house in the ‘burbs.

English by nature – Danish at heart. Freelance journalist Richard Steed has lived in Copenhagen for nearly five years now. “I love this city and want Copenhagen to be a shining example to the rest of the world.”



7 - 13 October 2011

Courts and psychologists in fight over confidentiality Plane passengers criticise JENNIFER BULEY Professional association changes position and urges psychologist to testify about former client


The confidentiality agreement means that whatever he tells me – even criminally punishable things – won’t go any further formation is judged essential for solving a criminal case, as in the present case, the right can be superseded, Politiken reports. “We will ask the political system to give us better protection – the kind of legal protection that doctors and priests have,” Ulrichsen said. At least 400 members of the DPA signed a statement supporting Lindholm’s decision to defy the court and criticising Ulrichsen and the DPA’s board for caving in to the court, reports Jyllands-Posten. “It’s reprehensible. It will weigh very heavily on the concerned client, and I’m afraid it will destroy the trust between the soldiers and the [Ministry of ] Defence’s psychologists,” said DPA member and University of Southern Denmark professor Ask Elklit, who organised the statement of support for Lindholm.

“In the longer term it will weaken the trust that all clients have in their psychologists, especially the trust that the psychologist will not pass on things said in confidence,” Elklit added. Lindholm maintained that the court’s ruling could not excuse her from her responsibility to her client. “I have a responsibility to help the soldier. I agree that it is essential for justice to find out about possible crimes. But it isn’t for me, as the psychologist of a client, to provide information,” she told Politiken. “The court has taken legal responsibility to make me break my promise of confidentiality and tell them what I know. But the court can never take the professional and moral responsibilities for that. Those are my responsibilities.” If Lindholm does not cooperate with the court this week, she could face jail time herself. She has not said how she will respond on Wednesday when she is called to the stand.

Get the latest news online

Merete Lindholm was scheduled to take the stand on Wednesday at the time of going to press. Check for the latest developments.

“terrified” cabin crew


ASSENGERS on a flight between Copenhagen and Aalborg on September 13 described a scene of panicked flight attendants and lacking safety measures as the plane was forced to land due to an engine fire. It is thought that a mechanical failure caused the left motor to catch fire. The pilots of the Cimber Sterling flight quickly shut down the engine and made a safety landing 13 minutes later. All 47 passengers walked away unharmed, though some criticised the behaviour of the attendants and pilots. “We heard nothing from the cabin crew,” Sussi Handberg, one of the passengers on the flight, told Politiken. “The cabin crew ran up and down the aisle and looked terrified – almost more panicked than anyone else.” Handberg described how many of her fellow passengers became frightened after noticing the engine fire. “The passengers looked scared – some shouted and screamed. Others were panicking. You could hear it in the way they shouted. Some were shouting for help, others were shouting names – I don’t know what names. Others just shouted. There was no help,” she said. Another passenger, Peter Møller Wormslev, told Politiken

about a stewardess he could see from his seat. “She was just sitting and staring, completely stiff with fear. You could see it in her facial expression and her eyes – she was completely paralysed. She only called the cockpit when I asked her if she ought to be taking charge. Then she walked to the other end of the plane and I didn’t see her again.” According to another passenger, Peter Fuglsang Christiansen, the plane touched down without passengers being told how to prepare for an emergency landing. “We didn’t hear again from the stewardess for the rest of the flight. They didn’t secure the cabin before the emergency landing or tell us what to do when we landed and had to exit the plane. We didn’t get any information about having to brace or put on our safety belts,” Christiansen said. But according to Tom Zøllner, the head of flight safety for Cimber Sterling, the flight crew followed the correct procedures. “There is always room for improvement and I would like to hear what they have to say. We are currently gathering information and then we will make our recommendations.” The Accident Investigation Board is currently investigating the cause of the engine fire. (PS)


HE CASE of a former military psychologist, who has been ordered to testify on information given to her in confidence by a soldier in therapy, has hundreds of her peers up in arms over basic client confidentiality rights. The psychologist, Merete Lindholm, has been ordered to appear in the High Eastern Court on Wednesday this week to tell the court what a former client, a military translator who was stationed in Afghanistan in 2002, told her about an alleged incident of Danish military personnel torturing Afghani war prisoners. According to the Eastern High Court, the translator allegedly told Lindholm during therapy about witnessing soldiers abusing prisoners and showed Lindholm a CD containing “Abu Ghraib-like” photos depicting the abuse. In 2010, a former Afghani war prisoner sued the Danish government claiming that Danish soldiers abused him. The case resurrected interest in the translator’s story but when the translator refused to co-operate,

Lindholm was ordered to tell what she knew. She is also refusing to cooperate, saying it is a matter of safeguarding the basic principle of therapist-client confidentiality. “Whenever I began treating a soldier, confidentiality was one of the first things we talked about. It’s not the same thing as when one friend says to another: ‘You can’t tell anybody about this.’ The confidentiality agreement means that whatever he tells me – even criminally punishable things – won’t go any further,” Lindholm told Politiken newspaper. Up until last week, her professional association, the Danish Psychological Association (DPA), backed her up in her appeal to the Supreme Court to be excused from testifying. But last week the Supreme Court rejected the appeal, and the DPA’s board of directors switched its position and began urging Lindholm to comply with the court and testify. “We have to accept that we’re subject to the courts. That’s why we are now recommending that she obey the court,” DPA chairman Roal Ulrichsen told Politiken. Ulrichsen added that he was unhappy about the decision and that the DPA would take the case up with “the court of human rights and the political system”. By law, psychologists have the basic right to client confidentiality. However, if the in-

NBC is hoping a ‘Borgen’ remake will have the same success as the US version of ‘The Killing’

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TV network will air remake of Danish political drama ‘Borgen’


ITH THEIR eyes on another killing, US broadcaster NBC has announced its intention to make an English-language version of ‘Borgen’, the DR TV drama series about a political leader who unexpectedly becomes the country’s first female prime minister. The rights to the 2010 series have been acquired by BBC Worldwide, which will coproduce the US version along with Universal Television. BBC Four will show the original series in the UK, while Link TV will

show it in the US. The series has already been broadcast in Sweden, Norway and Finland, and there are also plans to show it in Iceland, Latvia and France, and possibly Brazil, Australia and South Korea, while the DVD is on sale in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and the Benelux countries. NBC will be hoping to emulate the success of ‘The Killing’, rival broadcaster AMC’s remake of the 2007 Danish drama series ‘Forbrydelsen’, the first series of which recently finished airing on US television. While viewers were dissatisfied with the openended climax of series one, a second season looks assured.

When ‘Borgen’ first broadcast in Denmark in 2010 – a second series is currently being aired on DR1 – similarities between the show’s 40-year-old central character, Birgitte Nyborg, and Social Democrats leader Helle Thorning-Schmidt, 44, were heavily scrutinised by the media. Less so were the similarities between ‘Borgen’ and ‘Commander-in-chief ’, a US drama series that ran for 18 episodes from 2005-06, starring Geena Davis as a female politician who unexpectedly becomes president after the death of the incumbent. (BH)

More ‘Borgen’ on page 18


The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011


Mind your ps and the world, according to Claire, is your oyster Photos and Words: Jessica slicer

At an event hosted by the European Professional Women’s Network of Copenhagen, the charismatic communications expert and expat, New Zealand’s Claire Clausen, came to speak with a dynamic group of women about effective communication. Her presentation, deemed ‘The 5 P’s - A Positive Profile for Personal and Professional Progress’, taught attendees how to prepare and present, both themselves and their work.

Also in attendance were (left-right) Jik Book, who moved from Holland to Copenhagen, Laura Krikhaar, an English woman who now lives in Frederiksberg, and Pia Koch, who came to Copenhagen from Germany.

One of the members of the EPWN Copenhagen steering committee, Stacy Towsen from Canada, uses body language while speaking to Maria Gavigan from Ireland, who uses Clausen’s tip of maintaining strong eye contact, causing the speaker to feel like the “most important person in the world”.

Clausen together with event organiser and fellow Kiwi, Toni Heisterberg. Both of the women made the move to Denmark permanently after finding love and have since become members of the English-speaking “expat ghetto” in Copenhagen.

The EPWN event brought together a good mix of nationalities, including Isabelle Valentine of France and America’s Karline Segan, both of whom have now relocated to just outside of Copenhagen.

Jessica Nielsen of Canada (left) and Ana Aurken from Paris follow the most basic tip for effective communication - a positive attitude and a smile - which can help you score an impressive job or make a new friend.

Heisterberg, no stranger to speaking in front of a crowd, welcomes the attendees to the evening’s event.




7 - 13 October 2011


Prince Michael of Kent’s visit included a dinner on Monday night at the residence of the British ambassador Nick Archer (centre) where the cousin of Elizabeth II, who happens to closely resemble their grandfather George V, was greeted by BCCD president Mariano Davies.

Prince Michael of Kent met a wide cross-section of Danish and British dignitaries at the dinner including (left-right) Davies, Better Place director of communication Susanne Tolstrup and Copenhagen Post chief executive Jesper Nymark.

Ahead of China’s national day on Saturday, the country’s ambassador Xie Hangsheng held a celebration at his embassy in Hellerup last week on Wednesday to mark the Cyprus celebrated its independence day last week on Wednesday with an event at occasion. Here he is pictured with former Frederiksberg mayor Mads Lebech (right), the Marriott Hotel. Here the country’s ambassador George C Kasoulides is greeting his Portuguese counterpart João Pedro Silveira de Carvalho. the CEO of Industriens Fond.

Among those attending a charity chamber concert on Tuesday at Asia House in support of the victims of the Japanese tsunami were (front row: left-right) US ambassador Laurie S Fulton, the queen’s cousin Princess Elisabeth, and Japanese ambassador Toshio Sano.

Britain’s Prince Michael of Kent was in town on Monday and Tuesday to attend a Genesis Initiative Delegation event organised by the British Chamber of Commerce (BCCD) and British Import Union to encourage and support the growth of British SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) in the EU.

Home sweet home in Hellerup

Our community editor, Victoria Steffensen, lives in Hellerup, the home of so many international schools, families, companies and embassies, and undoubted heartland of the expat scene. And although her kids don’t go to an international school and she couldn’t tell you where her closest embassy is, Victoria proves your home is where your heart is – in her case, in Hellerup.


No, it’s not the cast of Borgen but a selection of the guests attending the opening of the Danish parliament on Tuesday. Pictured on the front row, second from the right is the dean of the Diplomatic Corps, the Mexican ambassador Martha Elena Alvaro, and to her left Jette Nordam, the chief of protocol at the Foreign Ministry.

The Indian Embassy organised an event on Sunday to commemorate the anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi, which involved a ceremony at Ghandi Park (on the corner of Hvidkildevej and Borups Allé), and then the screening of a documentary back at the embassy. Apology: In last week’s About Town, the Saudi Arabian ambassador was incorrectly identified in a photo. His name is in fact Abdul Rahman Saad A Al-Hadlg, and we unreservedly apologise to his excellency for the error.

HERE are many things one has to contend with as a new arrival to a country. For foreigners coming to Denmark there’s the language, getting hold of the all-important social security card, and learning to master the dash from the back of the queue straight to the front when a new checkout counter opens at Netto, knocking any children or frail pensioners out of the way as you do – believe me, that little old lady would have knocked you flying if she’d seen it first. But there’s another thing that has proved a challenge to me as a foreigner moving to Denmark: why my Britishbought pillows don’t fit into any of the pillow cases my husband had from his bachelor life (most of which had to be thrown away because they were predominately tasteless), and why I always had to fight with the pillows bought in Jysk sengetøjslager, when putting them inside one of my oh so tasteful Britishbought cases. So, why do people in Britain have rectangular pillows while people in Denmark sleep on square pillows? Do we have different shaped heads? Is this just a problem that Brits settling in

Denmark have, I wondered. Time for a little office-based (and rather unscientific) research, which revealed the Brits here are not alone on this one. “Hey, what about those massive German pillows!” said an American coworker. “And those weird long thin French ones,” someone else chipped in. I had to agree with the German comment, having recently stayed with some German friends in Heidelberg. Their pillows are simply gigantic. I had a job deciding whether to sleep under the duvet or the pillow itself. As it happens, Brits sleep on pillows which are 50 x 75 cm, Germans 80 x 80 cm and the Danes 60 x 63 cm? And what are the EU bureaucrats doing to help their citizens in this respect? For years they’ve been busy passing and revoking laws on the size and shape of vegetables. Personally, I don’t care whether my carrot is straight or bent or simply looks a bit rude, but I do care whether or not I have to struggle with my bed linen.

So, Connie (our Danish commissioner in Europe) - can’t you do something to help us world-travellers and lobby for a pan-European pillow size? Believe me: it may not help with your aims for the world’s climate, but you will give countless expats a better night’s sleep! Oh, and I had another idea when I recently slipped my Ikeabought pillow into my Ikea-bought pillow case. They fitted like the proverbial hand and glove. You’ve got to hand it to the Swedes. They obviously thought to themselves: “Swedish pillows are great. Let’s stock Ikea stores around the globe with Swedish-standard bed items, and screw what the foreigners think!” and off they went. So perhaps there should be an international agreement that all responsibilities in this area should be handed over to the head of Ikea’s home furnishings department. It would certainly give our world leaders one less headache.

Hey, what about those massive German pillows!

13 Looking for a few good (and young) ambassadors COMMUNITY


7 - 13 October 2011

SARAH HUTCHERSON International students hope they have what it takes to promote Denmark globally


OYCE TAYLOR, an American student at the University of Copenhagen and a potential Youth Goodwill ambassador, no longer feels foreign in Denmark. She understands the Danish rule - never stand in the bike lane - and occasionally laughs at oblivious tourists who mindlessly stand in the bicyclists’ path. Taylor even admits she regularly mumbles: “Get out of the bike lane, buddy,” to foreigners who don’t know the rules! Taylor is one of 160 international students who came together last week on Wednesday at Hotel Skt Petri to participate in the second round of the Youth Goodwill Ambassadors Corps (YGAC) application process, where the students learnt what it takes to be a YGAC ambassador and how to better promote Denmark. Around 90 of those applicants will become YGAC ambassadors. To qualify the international students must be enrolled at the University of Copenhagen, the Technical University of Denmark, Copenhagen Business School, Aarhus University or Aalborg University. The YGAC’s main priority is for students to create connections between their home countries and Denmark to encourage young people to study and live in Denmark for an extended period of time.

“In 2020, we [Denmark] are going to need 100,000 highly skilled individuals to help us maintain the kind of growth rates [in Denmark] we’d like to see,” explained YGAC executive director Caroline Arends. “There is really a need for educated people that we do not produce ourselves.” This is the second year the YGAC has been in existence, and it will accept about 50 more ambassadors than last year. Arends said the organisation hopes to have 3,000 current and former ambassadors by 2020. The Copenhagen Goodwill Ambassador Corps, founded 15 years ago as a way to attract tourism and businesses to Denmark, created the YGAC together with the Danish Agency of International Education. The Copenhagen Goodwill Ambassador Corps is currently made up of expatriate Danes living in 29 countries around the world. Their job is to connect public figures in their region with highranking Danish officials in the hope of bringing business to Denmark. The two corps are united through a mentorship programme that matches each youth ambassador with a member of the adult corps who works in the student’s chosen career field. The programme allows the youth ambassadors to network and gain insight into how to promote Denmark in their particular fields of study. In fact, many youth ambassadors gain internships or jobs because of the connections created in the programme. Jeffrey Manner, a Copenhagen Busi-

Jeffrey Manner, Joyce Taylor and Donelle Kosch were three US students bidding to become youth ambassadors

ness School student from Canada, was one of those on hand on Wednesday to learn more about the programme. Manner said he plans to live in Denmark for five years and is currently looking for jobs. He knows a career abroad would be an invaluable CV-booster and help him stand out once he returns home. He explained that the majority of undergraduates he studied with did not continue on to graduate school, and of those that did, few chose to do so abroad. Manner is a model for the YGAC’s mission: he believes in networking and plans to stay in Denmark for an extended period of time where he will contrib-

COMING UP SOON EPWN-Copenhagen ‘Dinnerout’

Sticks n Sushi, Istedgade 62, Cph V; Wed 12 Oct, 19:00-22:00; price of dinner not included; register by Mon 10 Oct with Toni at toniheisterberg@ or

Join the European Professional Women’s Network of Copenhagen for their monthly ‘Dinnerout’, which includes an evening of sushi, meaningful conversation and networking. Taking on more than just food and fun, the topic of the evening is ‘The Confidence Factor’. The evening will include a feature presentation focused on how to have a positive self-image in order to be confident on both a professional and a personal levels. Over dinner, discuss your own recipe for self-confidence while gaining insightful tips from other dynamic professional expat women living in the Copenhagen area. Visit the Danish Parliament

Christiansborg, Cph K; tours in English at 13:00 on Sundays, public holidays and during school holidays; free adm;

With a new government just put in place, it is an exciting and interesting time to visit parliament to see where the new leaders of this country will exercise democracy. The tour takes participants around Christiansborg while they listen to the history of the building and the

Danish representative government. The tour includes sites in the parliament chamber where important decisions are made, and portraits of former prime ministers. If the times don’t suit, simply get a group of up to 30 of you and take the tour on your own on your day off. Tickets for tours can be purchased at the front desk from 9am. Philosophy meet-up about Søren Kierkegaard

Café Retro, Knabrostræde 26, Cph N; Sun 9 Oct, 18:00; copenhagen

Famed Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard once said: “Life is to be understood backwards but lived forwards.” Considered the father of existentialism, Kierkegaard said life was a continuous process of self-discovery and evolution. Meet with others in a cosy café setting to discuss the works of Kierkegaard and ponder the true meaning of life. Whether you agree with his ideas of humans being prone to despair and constant uncertainty or prefer to look at the brighter side of life, get philosophical and open your mind to all possibilities. Improvisation Workshop VerdensKulturCentret, Nørre Allé 7, Cph N; Tue 11 Oct, 19:00; free adm;

Break out of your reserved and well-behaved Copenhagen shell and join in with a night of im-

prov. Come to observe or join in the fun at this event hosted by the Copenhagen Theatre Circle. For the shy or inexperienced, a leader will guide participants through a wide range of activities to get the creative juices flowing and outgoing personalities released. As always with the CTC, this is a great opportunity to network, meet other expats and have an easygoing and entertaining evening.

ute economically and intellectually. The one obstacle the YGAC faces is money. The corps is funded through the Confederation of Danish Industry, but Arends said there was a need for more companies to get involved in order for the YGAC to expand its influence. More funding, she said, would allow a full-time staff to be hired in Denmark so ambassadors can check back in once they return to their home countries. This, she believed, would create a more cohesive organisation. Even though the YGAC is a new concept with a small number of members, the prospective ambassadors gathered at Skt Petri Hotel believed they

could reach a large audience with a small amount of resources. Donelle Kosch, an American studying at the University of Copenhagen, explained that it was the “the little, daily things” that connect those at home with Denmark. Social media, letters, and blogs allow students to promote Denmark to foreign acquaintances without much effort. Taylor agreed. “Word of mouth”, whether in its old-fashioned or modern version, she contended, is the most effective method the ambassadors, or anyone can use, to bring international youth to a country that is no longer foreign to them.


Film Premiére, 26 October 2011

Conference: The legal dimension of global governance: What role for the EU? Alexander Hall, Bispetorv Annex, Bispetorv 1-3, Cph K; Thu 13 Oct, 08:45–12:00; contact Bart.van. for more information

Hosted by the Faculty of Law at the University of Copenhagen, this conference seeks to bring together academics and practitioners to consider the European Union’s involvement in the future of global financial, trade, security and environmental governance. Taking an in-depth look at the legal structures that organise the global governance regimes in a multi-polar world, the conference looks for an internal and external perspective on the capacity of the EU. Hear varied answers to these questions and many more, plus the unique viewpoints of the lecturers and participants


Come and join other members and guests of BCCD-BIU for a glass of wine and some networking, before settling down to enjoy the premiére of Charlotte Brontë’s ‘Jane Eyre’, starring Mia Wasikowska, Michael Fassbender, Jamie Bell and Judi Dench. Wednesday 26 October, 18:30 at the Grand, Mikkel Bryggers Gade 8, 1460 København K

Jane Eyre - A mousy governess who softens the heart of her employer soon discovers that he’s hiding a terrible secret. Tickets cost DKK 125 (inc MOMS and a glass of wine), or DKK 150 for non-members and will be invoiced before the event. The film will start at 19:00. If you would like to attend please sign up online, or email event”@” The film is 120 minutes long.

Full details including location can be found at

You can sign up via the website, send an email to or phone 31 18 75 58. • official media partner Denmark’s only English-language newspaper



The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011

denmark’s rubbish at athletics – is it because it’s not a team sport? athletics head blames football, a national tendency to “play” and low participation rates, but hints that success could be just around the corner


Janick Klausen is the one to look out for at the 2016 olympics in rio

( In Copenhagen alone there are several clubs with very well organised youth departments. Most of the coaches at the clubs have been athletes at a national level in the past, including Wilson Kipketer, who is a consultant to our top runners.” Flensborg-Madsen recommends Sparta atletik in Østerbro, the biggest club in Denmark, which over the course of the year have a number of weekends specifically for talent-spotting (check for details of the next one). however, Larsen is realistic enough to know it is a tough battle competing with sports like football. “There’s no real reason to pursue a career in international athletics - at least not a financial reason. It’s simply not worth the investment when the chance for success is so much bigger in other walks of life,” he said, adding that athletics tended to attract a certain type. “Most choose it because they like having sole responsibility for both success and failure. There are no excuses and no-one to share the glory – it’s up to you and you alone.”

Fact file | danish achievements •

DenMarK has never won an Olympic gold in athletics. In total Denmark has won just six medals: two silvers and four bronzes. Denmark failed to win a single medal between 1952 and 1996. The 2004 Olympics produced two medals: Wilson Kipketer’s silver in the 800m and Joachim B Olsen’s bronze in the shot put. at the World athletics Championship, which started in 1983, beyond Wilson Kipketer’s three golds, it has won just one bronze – renata nielsen in the long jump in 1993. In the history of the euro-

• • •

pean athletics Championship, which started in 1934, Denmark has only ever won three golds. not including Wilson Kipketer’s gold in 2002, Denmark’s last gold at the european Championship was in 1974, and since then it has won just two medals: both in the shot put. On the european all-time top 30 rankings lists, only five Danes feature: Kipketer, Olsen, middle-distance runner robert andersen (twice) and javelin thrower Christina Scherwin. Sweden have 29 entries, Finland 28 and norway 24.

Fact file | 2011 world athletics Championship performance ScANpix

here aren’t many nations that punch above their weight in football. take western europe where the five nations with populations exceeding 50 million have all won the World Cup, and every nation with a population below hasn’t. It puts into context the achievement of a country of 5.5 million people winning that continent’s biggest football tournament in 1992. Forget about Greece (11.3 million) winning euro 2004, only Uruguay (3.35 million, two World Cups, a record 15 Copa americas) outpunches Denmark in football’s flyweight division. It’s downright impressive, but does it come at a cost? Let’s start with a little survey. Do you know who Sara Slott Petersen is? Or andreas Bube? how about Caroline Bonde holm, Jesper Faurschou, anders Møller and Kim Juhl Christensen? a quick straw poll of the ten Danes in our office building (no they’re not porn stars) draws a complete blank. That is until the list is presented to Julie Flensborg-Madsen. “I know them all,” she said. “I used to compete alongside Sara and andreas at junior level.” It transpires that dark horse Julie represented Denmark in the long jump, which is why she knows who made up the Danish team at the recent World athletics Championships in South Korea. all six of them. For a land that has produced so many successful national teams, it’s further proof that Denmark rarely excels at individual sports. While there might be exceptions, like badminton (how many countries really take it seriously?), Caroline Wozniacki (who was driven by her pushy Polish father), Bjarne riis (cheated) and Wilson Kipketer (he only became a Danish citizen in his early 20s), Denmark’s success is minimal compared to other countries. take Sweden for example: they’re successful at a whole range of team sports, but yet they won three athletics golds at the 2004 Olympics alone, and the world’s lost count of the number of brilliant tennis players it’s produced. Could this gulf in class in individual sports have anything to do with the Danish national psyche’s adherence to the Janteloven, an unwritten law that encourages humility and modesty at all times. “Well, I’m not a big believer in Janteloven,” Jakob Larsen, the director general of the Danish athletic Federation (DaF), told The Copenhagen Post. “In my opinion Janteloven is primarily mentioned by people who tend to think they should be praised more than they

are – instead of focusing on themselves, they focus on everyone else. That being said, I think team sports are more popular in Denmark because it’s part sport, part playtime. There’s nothing playful about running ten miles or being a boxer. I guess Danes like to play.” Larsen is optimistic that the Danish athletics team will improve over the next decade, and while the aim is to make finals at the Olympics in London next year, the target will be medals in rio in 2016. “Watch out for the nordic record holder in the men’s long jump, Morten Jensen, who won a bronze medal at the european Indoor Championships in Paris in March 2011,” he said. “and one who has shown great promise is our high jumper, Janick Klausen. In March he made it to the finals at the european Indoor Championships despite being only 17. In July he won a silver medal at the european Junior Championships after several months plagued by injury. his jumping is quite spectacular as he is less than six feet tall and has cleared 227cm. I have the feeling that he could be the talk of the town in a few years time.” Still, Danish schools could be doing more to encourage athletics – the sight of a summer sports day is a rare one in this country. “In fact schools are supposed to teach athletics,” Larsen revealed. “however, the teachers often lack the skills, which makes them avoid it. It’s not that easy to do high jump with 25 children if you have no clue about the sport. Whereas a ball can be used in a multitude of ways.” Flensborg-Madsen agreed. “It would be easier to spot the talent if the schools did athletics,” she said. “Just like in Sweden where they do a lot of athletics at school – it’s one of the reasons why they’re so much better.” and figures from the DaF back this up. Only 6,000 children in Denmark participate in athletics, compared to 80,000 in Sweden and 40,000 in norway. Larsen would like to see more participate – and that also goes for the kids of internationals now settled in Denmark. “I would recommend them to get in touch with the nearest athletics club. If they don’t know where it is, they’re welcome to contact us by e-mail


Ben Hamilton

sara slott petersen, age 24, 400m hurdles, sixth in semi-final

Caroline Bonde Holm, 21, pole vault, 13th in heat

Andreas Bube, 24, 800m, sixth in semi-final

Jesper Faurschou, 28, marathon, 34th

Anders Møller, 34, triple jump, 23rd

Kim Juhl Christensen, 27, shot put, 17th

Caroline Klüft, Christian olsson and stefan Holm

spOrTs news and breiFs dismal day for danish duo FC COPenhaGen were beaten last week on Thursday away at Belgian side Standard Liege in the europa League, 3-0, while OB also lost, going down 2-0 at home to english Premier League outfit Fulham. The Belgians – better known for their defensive qualities than offensive – scored three times in the second half

to complete what was a rout by their standards. Unlike FCK, the Odense side actually played well, but could not find a way past Fulham’s australian keeper Mark Schwarzer. The losses leave the clubs in identical positions in their groups: in third place on three points, a point behind their victors and their next opponents.

Faxe axed

One year at the top

in a league of their own

JOhn Jensen was last week sacked as assistant manager of english Premier League side Blackburn rovers. Manager Steve Kean had been under pressure following a poor start to the season which sees rovers in the relegation zone, and following Jensen’s departure his side lost 4-0 at home to Manchester City.

CarOLIne Wozniacki survived a scare to advance at the atP-Wta China Open on Monday, beating the Czech republic’s Lucie hradecka 3-6, 6-0, 7-5. Wozniacki was crowned world number one for the first time after winning in Beijing last year, and will be hopeful of retaining the title this weekend.

DenMarK beat norway 28-8 over the weekend in the first ever game of rugby league between the nations. The Danes, who only started playing internationals this year, made an uncertain start to the nordic Cup game at Gladsaxe Stadion, but found their stride in the second half to win comfortably. The win fol-

lows a 52-18 defeat of Sweden in early July in Gothenberg, although it is not known if this will count as a proper international win after Denmark was given permission to use ineligible players – one of whom scored five tries. nevertheless, the two victories confirm Denmark as the nordic Cup champions.


The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011

Jennifer Buley Immigrant and danish women volunteers achieving milestones through mentorship


hat began as a small experiment in equality and integration eight years ago in Copenhagen has turned into a model for volunteer mentorship programmes around the world. The idea, the brain child of the Danish Centre for Information on Gender, Equality and Ethnicity (KVINFO), was fairly simple: take 12 accomplished Danish women willing to volunteer a bit of their time, match them up one-on-one with 12 immigrant women new to Denmark, ask them to co-create mentorship plans based on the mentees’ goals, and see what happens. What happened was bigger than anyone expected. With their mentors’ support, the mentees learned to navigate the Danish system, found jobs, began new educations, and their Danish networks grew. Interestingly, the mentors also saw their own professional and personal networks grow. They found new inspiration, insight and satisfaction. a few even changed their own life

paths and embarked on new professional and personal ventures. Just eight years later that little pilot project, called the KVINFO mentor network, has grown to include more than 5000 thousand women from all over Denmark. The free mentorships are available to all immigrant women and daughters of immigrants. today the network’s mentees have roots in 125 different countries and range in age from 18 to the late 60s. In 2007 the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) recognised the KVINFO mentor network as a model integration project. “The mentees experience a high degree of satisfaction with how their lives develop,” Mia Rosenørn, the network’s coordinator, told The Copenhagen Post. “Past data has shown that at least four out of ten mentees who want a job find one during the course of the mentorship. That’s a huge win for the mentees,” Rosenørn added. “But we measure success by how many pairs complete the mentorship cycle – from meeting and agreeing to work together, to planning activities to achieve goals, to achieving some or all of them, and finally bringing the mentorship to a close.”

By the end of 2010, 2,725 mentor pairs had met those success criteria. The KVINFO mentor network’s activities have grown to include dozens of workshops, with themes such as negotiating, networking, and how to make the most of a mentorship. seasonal social events round off the offerings. “It’s important for women to have a big network, and the bigger the better in order to exchange information,” said Rosenørn, who co-ordinates the workshops in addition to matching the mentees with mentors. The matching process begins with some storytelling, followed by questionnaires and interviews. Then the Mentees and mentors are matched up based on profession, education and the mentees’ individual goals. But in the end, Rosenørn said, deciding which two women to pair up often comes down to “a gut feeling” – albeit one grounded in Rosenørn’s education in psychology and communication. It is then up to the two women to decide if they have the right chemistry to pursue a mentorship together. If not, the matching process continues. “Every mentor relationship is different. You learn so much seeing how differently people work together, how they com-


sisters doin’ it for themselves


KVinFO’s mentor network has inspired new mentorship programmes in scandinavia and north Africa

municate, and how they deal with challenges.” In recent years the KVINFO mentor network has served as a model for mentor networks in countries like Iceland, Finland, Norway and Morocco, where the focus might be on women’s economic development or an entirely different issue than in-

tegration. “We focus on immigrants, but the model works for other groups too. It is now being translated to other countries, groups and goals,” said Rosenørn. Perhaps the biggest sign of the project’s success is that the men are calling for a mentor network of their own.

“We get lots of inquiries asking why we haven’t created a parallel organisation for men,” Rosenørn said. “This has naturally got us thinking about that possibility.” Read more about the Kvinfo mentor network at side/1002/

Unemployment rising, especially among women colourbox

Intensive Danish Courses Day and Evening Classes E-learning Pronunciation Classes

business leaders are predicting more job losses in 2011

Jennifer Buley Joblessness is on the rise again, although it is still lower than it was this time last year


hE latEst figures from statistics Denmark paint a picture of an uncertain job market with unemployment creeping slowly upwards again after a year of modest job gains. Business leaders have expressed concern that the picture will

get even bleaker before 2011 is over. Unemployment rates nationwide increased for the fourth month in a row, statistics Denmark reported in its analysis for august 2011. Corrected for normal seasonal highs and lows, the latest tallies show that the nation’s overall unemployment rate is hovering at 6.2 percent of the total workforce – approximately 165,200 people. In august alone, the number of unemployed rose by

1,100, approximately 1,000 of which were women. “It means that only women’s unemployment rose, while for men it was relatively stable,” statistics Denmark reported. Workers between the ages of 30 and 60 lost the most jobs, while workers under 30 actually showed a slight increase in employment. Nevertheless, people in the 25-29 age group still have the highest unemployment rate in the country at nearly ten percent. The latest numbers reinforced the concerns of business leaders from the Confederation of Danish Industry (DI), which recently predicted that as many as 7,000 more people could lose their jobs before the end of this year. DI’s prediction was based on a survey it conducted in which one third of all the Danish business executives questioned indicated that they expected unemployment to rise in the fourth quarter of 2011.

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Price in kroner for one unit of foreign currency

Date: 5 October 2011



SPOUSE: Geet Shroff FROM: Bangalore, India SEEKING WORK IN: Midtjylland / Copenhagen / Odense QUALIFICATION: Bachelor’s degree in Communicative English from Bangalore University, India. EXPERIENCE: 8+ years of experience as Senior Copy Writer, Assistant Manager – Marketing Communications, Executive – Customer Loyalty & Communication, Customer Service Associate respectively. Through these years, I have developed content, handled complete marketing communications, organized numerous corporate (internal & external customer), private and institutional events ranging from 50 to 1000 people and also handling special projects that have included training & internal communication campaigns. LOOKING FOR: A Corporate or Marketing Communication (Internal or External) position or that of a Copy Writer at an advertising agency or a corporate house. Also open to a position at an event management company. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English, Danish (Beginner). IT EXPERIENCE: MS-Office, Adobe In Design CS3 (Basic). CONTACT: +4550834024

SPOUSE: Clémence Arnal FROM: France SEEKING WORK IN: Copenhagen; Region Sjælland QUALIFICATION: Wastewater/drinking water (processes and treatments, building design, water sampling and pollution rate measurement); environment protection ( river basin management, waste management). EXPERIENCE: Waste sorting representative (Office “Communauté du Pays d’Aix”, France); Leaks investigation on drinking water networks, Help to communes to deal with their drinking water system, Control operation of individual sanitation systems (Office “G2C Environnement”, France); Drinking water stations security: putting the Antiterrorist security plan in practice, employees security , Distribution network security: determining the cost of a network re-chlorination unit (“Drinking Water” administration of Aix en Provence, France). LOOKING FOR: Water treatment assistant / engineer. LANGUAGE SKILLS: French (mother tongue); English (Fluent); Danish (Prøve Dansk 3). IT EXPERIENCE: MS-Office; AutoCAD (basic); Mapinfo (basic). CONTACT: / tlf: 23 34 63 22

SPOUSE: Debjani Nandy Biswas FROM: India SEEKING WORK IN: Would like to join in kindergarten, School teacher in English, official work in English. QUALIFICATION: B.A., M.A in English literature and language (American, European and Indian). EXPERIENCE: Temporary school teacher in Bongaon, India and involved in social work (handicapped society). LOOKING FOR: A possibility in getting practical experiences in kindergarten or any international school, official work (administration) in English, voluntary work also. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English, Hindi, Sanskrit, Bengali, little Danish (currently learning). IT EXPERIENCE: Diploma in basic computer applications. CONTACT: E-mail:, Tel: +45 50219942.

SPOUSE: Lorenzo Albano FROM: Venezuela (with CPR number) SEEKING WORK IN: Greater København and Hovedstaden QUALIFICATION: PhD in Physics. EXPERIENCE: I have wide experience as an university lecturer in physics, physics laboratory, mathematics and informatics. I have done research in theoretical quantum optics and quantum information. I have done research and development / programming of numerical methods applied to geophysical problems, such as tomographic inversion and wave propagation, independently and as part of multidisciplinary teams. I have participated in gravimetric and magnetometric geophysical surveys. LOOKING FOR: Short and long term work in education in science and mathematics / research / scientific computing / oil exploration or other geophysical applications. LANGUAGE SKILLS: Fluent in Spanish (native), English and Italian. Basic Danish. IT EXPERIENCE: OS: MSDOS, Windows, Linux (Ubuntu), Solaris, incl. shell scripting. Programming Languages: BASIC, ANSI C, C++, FORTRAN. Web: HTML, CSS, Joomla!. Typography: LaTeX2E. Software: Mathematica 7, MS Office and OpenOffice suites, several Windows utilities. CONTACT: Tel: +45 50 81 40 73

SPOUSE: Vivek Kanwar Singh FROM: India SEEKING WORK IN: All of Denmark QUALIFICATION: 3 Years full time Bachelor in Fashion Design from National Institute of Fashion Technology (India). EXPERIENCE: 8 years of experience working in India and Republic of Mauritius with Garment Manufacturing Companies. Worked as a Key Account Manager for many International Brands like: GAP, FRENCH CONNECTION, MARKS & SPENCERS, SAKS 5TH AVENUE, etc.. LOOKING FOR: Full time Job in Textiles, Fashion and Apparel Industry. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English (fluent-Writing/Reading), Hindi (Fluent-Writing/Reading), Danish (DU3, Module 2). IT EXPERIENCE: Microsoft Certified System Engineer (no work experience though). CONTACT:, Mobile: +45-50179511 SPOUSE: Daniel Jones FROM: United Kingdom SEEKING WORK IN: Greater Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: Qualified Teacher Status, UK; Bachelor of Science Degree (1st Class), UK. EXPERIENCE: Enthusiastic, hands on teacher with 8 years teaching experience of Mathematics and Science in UK and International Schools. IB, GCSE and A-Level, including as Head of Department with excellent feedback from pupils, parents and teaching colleagues. LOOKING FOR: Teaching positions in secondary schools; Private tuition; Education related roles. LANGUAGE SKILLS: Mother tongue English, fluent in Italian. IT EXPERIENCE: MS-office. CONTACT: SPOUSE: Dr Bev Sithole FROM: Australia SEEKING WORK IN: Social science research, project management, proposal writing and project evaluations. QUALIFICATION: PhD Applied Social Sciences; MSc Environmental Science; BA Hons Geography; Experiences in application of Participatory Approaches; Familiar with various project proposal writing frameworks. EXPERIENCE: I am an experienced social scientist with interdisciplinary training and am also an experienced participatory research, planning and evaluation practitioner. I have worked on governance of natural resources and community development issues in southern Africa and Northern Australia for over 15 years. I have been team leader on a number of research and evaluation projects. I spent more than five years managing projects and writing project proposals involving many organizations in the Stockholm Environmental Institute, Sweden and in the Center for International Forestry Research in Bogor, Indonesia and most recently at LIFE, University of Copenhagen, Denmark. I am an experienced communicator and facilitator. LOOKING FOR: Short term or long term work in research, project management or proposal. writing. Can deliver training in participatory approaches. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English IT EXPERIENCE: Basic computer skills. CONTACT: Telephone HP 27834333, Email: SPOUSE: Raffaele Menafra FROM: Italy SEEKING WORK IN: Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: A degree as Prevention techniques in Work and Workplaces. EXPERIENCE: I worked 4 years in a rehabilitationclinic. LANGUAGE SKILLS: Italian (native), English, Danish (currently learning). IT EXPERIENCE: MS Office. CONTACT: SPOUSE: Fernando Carlos Cardeira da Silva FROM: Portugal SEEKING WORK IN: Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: Accounting course from Danish Institution (Regnskabs medarbejder at Niels Brock), previous frequency of Accounting and Management courses in Portugal. EXPERIENCE: I have more than 5 years of experience in accounting. LOOKING FOR: Job as accounting assistant. IT EXPERIENCE: Microsoft Office (Excel, Word and Power point) and accounting software such as Navision C5. LANGUAGE SKILLS: I can read and write Danish, English, Portuguese, Spanish and French. CONTACT: +45 50437588 SPOUSE: Mayurika Saxena Sheth FROM: India/USA SEEKING WORK IN: (Copenhagen, Kobenhavn & nearby areas, Greater Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: MCA, PGDMM(MATERIALS), B.SC (COMPUTERS) CERTIFICATIONS: CSTE, CSQA, GREEN BELT SIX SIGMA, TSP/PSP. EXPERIENCE: Eleven years of software development work/IT/BUSINESS experience with prestigious organizations (onsite and offshore): Microsoft, General Electric, Primus Telecommunications (AUSTRALIA), CitiFINANCIAL(USA), ISS and Imany. LOOKING FOR: Full Time Job in IT, Management, Consulting or Business/Financial Field. LANGUAGE SKILLS: ENGLISH fluent, HINDI fluent, DANISH AND SPANISH (Beginner). IT EXPERIENCE: Testing tools like Test Director, Quality Center, Access Server, Product Studio, Polyspace Analysis, .NET testing, Web Page testing, Electronic Appliances testing, development in Winrunner, ASP, HTML, JavaScript, VBScript, Jscript, Oracle, Cold Fusion, SQL, Access, COM/DCOM, MTS, Siebel as well as UNIX, Tuxedo, C, PL/SQL, VB.Net/ ASP .Net, VB.Net. C#. CONTACT: Tel +45 7169 5401

SPOUSE: Jawon Yun-Werner FROM: South Korea SEEKING WORK IN: Healthcare, Hospitals, Elderly/Child Care (in Greater Copenhagen Area). QUALIFICATION: B.A. in Nursing, Masters in Public Health. I am AUTHORIZED to work as a Nurse in Denmark. (have Danish CPR and work permit). EXPERIENCE: 1O years of experience as a nurse and midwife from the prominent hospitals. LOOKING FOR: Any healthcare related jobs (hospitals, clinics, elderly/childcare places). I am open to any shift or day. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English, Korean, Danish (Intermediate, in progress, Module 3). IT EXPERIENCE: MS Office, SASS Statistical Software CONTACT: +45 30 95 20 53 SPOUSE: Isaac P Thomas FROM: India SEEKING WORK IN: East Juthland preferably Århus QUALIFICATION: Bachelor of Engineering (Computer Science). EXPERIENCE:Process Consulting, Quality Assurance, CMMI, ISO, Quality Audit, Process Definition, Software testing, software development, data analysis, best practice sharing, quality gap analysis LOOKING FOR: Process Consulting, Quality Assurance, CMMI, ISO, Quality Audit, Process Definition LANGUAGE SKILLS: Danish beginner, english, malayalam, hindi tamil. IT EXPERIENCE: 8 years experence in IT Industry in software quality assurance, software quality control, software development. CONTACT:, +4552225642 SPOUSE: Sarah Andersen FROM: United Kingdom SEEKING WORK IN: Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: BA Honours Design Management. EXPERIENCE: Creative and versatile Project manager with experience of working in both agency and client environments on projects including; digital, print and event management. Worked with a range of international clients, including Panasonic and Disney. Previously employed by NMA Top 100 Digital Agencies and D&AD Awards in London. Able to manage projects from concept to production and to meet tight deadlines. LOOKING FOR: Digital Project Manager or Event Production Manager (full, part time or freelance) LANGUAGE SKILLS: English (native), enrolled for Danish language class. IT EXPERIENCE: Office, Project, Visio, FTP and CMS. CONTACT: for portfolio, CV and contact SPOUSE: Rita Paulo FROM: Portugal SEEKING WORK IN: Great Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: Architect . EXPERIENCE: I am an architect and I have experience in Project and in Construction Supervision. In the past 7 years, I have worked mainly in housing, masterplanning and social facilities buildings. My last employer was a Project and Construction company where I had the opportunity to complement my experience in projects together with construction related tasks, developing myself as a professional. LOOKING FOR: Job in Architecture or Construction Company. LANGUAGE SKILLS: Native Portuguese, Proficiency in English, Basic user of Spanish and Danish IT EXPERIENCE: Strong knowledge of AutoCad and ArchiCad. Experience in Studio Max, CorelDraw, Photoshop, Office tools. CONTACT:, Tel: +45 2961 9694 SPOUSE: Shilpa Lingaiah FROM: India SEEKING WORK IN: Copenhagen, Aarhus, Odense and nearby areas of the mentioned cities. QUALIFICATION: PG Diploma in Obstetrics and Gynaecology (JSS University, India); Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (RGUHS, India). Danish agency for international education has assessed the above qualification and corresponds to Danish Master’s degree in Health Sciences. LOOKING FOR: Research related to health science, jobs in pharmaceutical industry or new challenging career opportunities. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English(fluent written and spoken),Enrolled for Danish language classes, Indian languages(Kannada and Hindi). IT EXPERIENCE: MS Office. CONTACT: Tel: +4552742859 SPOUSE: Laxmi Chawan FROM: India SEEKING WORK IN: Sjælland, as an architect/ interior designer or as a logistic co-ordinator. QUALIFICATION: Masters in Design Sciences and Sustainable Design, University of Sydney, Australia; Bachelors in Architecture, University of Mumbai, India. EXPERIENCE: Design development, Drafting, Working drawings, Planning and scheduling of projects, Report compilation, Invoicing and Administrative works. LOOKING FOR: Part time /Fulltime work in Architecture/Construction /Interior Designing Firm or Supply chain management field. IT EXPERIENCE:AutoCAD 2009, Adobe In Design, Photoshop, Microsoft Office, Project management softwares. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English,Hindi. CONTACT:, Mobile : +45 5253 2498

SPOUSE: Munawar Saleem FROM: Pakistan SEEKING WORK IN: Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: MBA logistics and supply chain management (Jonkoping University, Sweden) M.Sc. Computer Sciences (Punjab University, Lahore Pakistan). EXPERIENCE: 4 years, Lecturer in computer sciences. LOOKING FOR:Full time or part time job in Logistics and Supply. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English (fluent), Urdu (mother tongue), Swedish (Basic). IT EXPERIENCE: Proficient in MS Office (word, excel, power point etc.). CONTACT:, 71412010 SPOUSE: Margaret Ritchie FROM: Scotland, UK SEEKING WORK IN: Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: BA Business Administration majoring in Human Resource Management EXPERIENCE: Worked in the field of Education within a Scottish University. 12 years of experience. Administrating and organising courses and conferences and also worked as a PA to a Head of School. Great communication skills. LOOKING FOR: Administration work, typing, audio typing, data input. Can work from home. LANGUAGE SKILLS: Mother tongue: English, very basic Danish IT EXPERIENCE: A good user of Microsoft Office package, access to internet CONTACT: email: tel: 71182949 SPOUSE: Anisha Kanjhlia FROM: India SEEKING WORK IN: Arhus in Teaching/Training/Administration/Media/Public Relations QUALIFICATION: Post Graduate in Advertising & Communication. EXPERIENCE: 6+ years of professional experience in Training, Customer Service, Promotions, Brand Marketing, Content Analysis and Team Management. Strong experience in planning and executing initiatives. Extensive training experience and influencing skills that will assist me in building a high potential, motivated and an effective team. Hands-on training in soft skills like crucial conversations and people management Branch Manager & Head of Training for Cosmo Aviation Training School in New Delhi, India. Proficient in analyzing market trends to provide critical inputs for decision making and formulating training strategies. LOOKING FOR: Part time or full time in Aarhus. IT EXPERIENCE: Comfortable with all the basic computer knowledge like Excel, Word, Power Point, Internet browsing. CONTACT:, P: 4522305837 SPOUSE: Nina Chatelain FROM: Vancouver, BC, Canada SEEKING WORK IN: Midt- og syd jylland QUALIFICATION: BA courses in english and anthropology, certificate in desktop publishing and graphic design, internationally certified yoga teacher since 1999. EXPERIENCE: Over 7 years experience as the assistant to the director (what would correspond to a direktionssekretær position) at an international university museum where i also was seconded to act as the program administrator – a project management internal communications role – for the museum’s major renovation project. I acted as the director’s right hand and the museum’s communications hub where i had daily contact with the visiting public, community stakeholders, volunteers and students. I have earlier worked as an editor and writer in various capacities, as well as a desktop publisher/graphic designer. LOOKING FOR: An administrative role in a creative company that needs someone who can juggle a variety of projects and use excellent english writing and editing skills LANGUAGE SKILLS: English (mother tongue) and Danish (fluent comprehension-studieprøven / university entrance exam). IT EXPERIENCE: MS Office Package, PC and Apple, have earlier worked with various desktop publishing software, quick to learn new software and systems. CONTACT:, Phone: +45 29707430 SPOUSE: Kaewkarn Kanchanavipu FROM: Thailand SEEKING WORK IN: Sales, marketing, project management, business processes, supply chain, HR and general management functions. QUALIFICATION: M.Sc. International Business and Trade , School of Business Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Sweden; Bachelor of Economics, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand; Certificate of Exchange Studies in Business Administration Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, Austria; Certificate of Completion in STEPS, Saitama University, Japan. EXPERIENCE: Three-year professional experience in sales, marketing, business development and project management. Proven record of achieving high performance in multiple markets: Norway, Sweden, Japan and Thailand in various industries. Able to devise and implement coherent organization strategies whilst improving internal process and procedures within a demanding environment, project deadlines and budgets. Area of expertise & experience: Operational management, sales, marketing, business development, project management, recruitment, customer service and administration. LOOKING FOR: A challenging position that will utilize my skills and offer opportunities for future development as well as wish to make a significant contribution to the organization. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English, Japanese, Thai and novice Danish. IT EXPERIENCE: MS Office. CONTACT: Tel: +45 50 398 555, Email: SPOUSE: Himani Kanwarpal FROM: India SEEKING WORK IN: Århus/ Copenhagen QUALIFICATION: Completed Bachelor of Engineering in Electronics and communication in the 2005 EXPERIENCE: I worked with Dell International Services India for 1 yr and 5 months as a Technical support agent. Thereafter, I was with SAP Labs from March 2007 till June 2011, where I worked on functional topics like SAP SCM F&R, SAP IS- Retail and SAP SCM APO DP. The profile mainly comprised of customizing and configuring SAP systems and also testing various scenarios. I also conducted training on functional topics and SAP’s automation tool called eCATT. LOOKING FOR: Full Time, part time, intern etc. LANGUAGE SKILLS: English, Hindi, learning Danish. IT EXPERIENCE: Worked with SAP Labs for 4 yrs and 3 months and have functional experience with modules like: SAP IS Retail, SAP SCM F&R, SAP SCM APO DP. Worked with DELL International Services as a Technical Support associate. CONTACT:

Denmark’s only English-language newspaper THE COPENHAGEN POST SPOUSE EMPLOYMENT PAGE WHY: The Copenhagen Post wishes to help spouses looking for jobs in Denmark. We have on our own initiative started a weekly spouse job page in The Copenhagen Post, with the aim to show that there are already within Denmark many highly educated international candidates looking for jobs. If you are a spouse to an international employee in Denmark looking for new career opportunities, you are welcome to send a profile to The Copenhagen Post at and we will post your profile on the spouse job page when possible.


The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011 spOuse: Malgorzata Tujakowska FrOm: Poland seeking wOrk in: Aarhus and the surrounding area QualiFiCaTiOn: Masters in Ethnolinguistics with major in Chinese and English, Chinese HSK and Business Chinese Test certificates, 2-year long studies at Shanghai International Studies University and National Cheng Kung University,Taiwan. lOOking FOr: Working for companies hiring Polish and Chinese employees, teaching Chinese, Polish, Business English, linguistics, translation and interpretation, proofreading, Chinese business and culture consulting, administrative work. language skills: Polish (native speaker), Chinese – simplified and traditional (fluent), English (fluent), German(intermediate), Danish (intermediate-currently learning). iT experienCe: MS Office. COnTaCT: Tel:+45 28702377, spOuse: Steffen Schmidt FrOm: Germany seeking wOrk in: Copenhagen. QualiFiCaTiOn: Structured Finance Proffesional. lOOking FOr: A challenging finance position in Copenhagen (preferable within Corporate Finance). language skills: German (native), English (business fluent). iT experienCe: MS Word, Excel and Powerpoint. COnTaCT: spOuse: Lorena Augusta Moreira FrOm: Brazil seeking wOrk in: Great Copenhagen QualiFiCaTiOn: Interior Designer. experienCe: + 3 of experience with interior design and sales of furniture and decoration products. lOOking FOr: Position in an Organization/Company in the fields of: Interior design, lay-out and organization of vitrines, sales and assistance management. iT experienCe: Microsoft office (word, excel, outlook, access and power-point) access to internet. language skills: English (fluent), Portuguese (native) and Spanish (pre-intermediate). COnTaCT:, + 45 52177084 spOuse: Bhargavi Lanka Venkata FrOm: India seeking wOrk in: IT industry- Software - Manual & Automation Testing. QualiFiCaTiOn: Bachelor of Technology in Computer Science Engineering. experienCe: Part Time/Full Time work in Software Testing, 4yrs and 9 months experience as Senior Software Engineer – Testing in a U.S based MNC in Bangalore, India. language skills: English, Hindi, Enrolled for Danish classes. iT experienCe: Manual testing, Automation Regression testing using QTP, Web service testing using SOA Tool, HP Quality center, Unix, SQL, XML, Basic shell scripting. COnTaCT:; Mobile: 50376689 spOuse: Kamali Ganesan seeking wOrk in: Jylland, Denmark QualiFiCaTiOn: IT engineer. experienCe: LEGO systems. lOOking FOr: IT and Multimedia jobs. language skills: Tamil, English and Danish. iT experienCe: 3 Years in LEGO systems. COnTaCT:

FrOm: India

spOuse: Katarzyna Szkaradek FrOm: Poland seeking wOrk in: Mental hospitals, voluntary(Ngo) organisations, kindergartens, nurseries, babysitting QualiFiCaTiOn: Ma in Psychology (2008), post graduate studies in psychotherapy (4th year/ 5 year). experienCe: I am a highly motivated and creative individual with excellent communication skills. From January 2010 till August 2010 I worked independly in private practice. For the last 2 years (January ,2009 -October, 2010) I worked with children (also with special needs -Autism, Asperger, Down syndrome etc) and their families as a psychologist. My duties included organizing games, monitoring children’s development , consulting teachers and parents where appropriate and providing individual therapy. For the last 10 years I was member of NGO organisation and I was a volunteer in Israel, Italy, Portugal and Romania. lOOking FOr: Internship in mental hospitals, part –time or full time jobs in kindergartens, nurseries, job as a babysitter, voluntary job in hospitals. language skills: English–advance level (C1), Danish – (module 3 /module 5), Polish-native speaker iT experienCe: MS Windows, basic MS Office, Internet. COnTaCT: tlf. 50828802 spOuse: Francesco Grandesso FrOm: Italy seeking wOrk in: Copenhagen QualiFiCaTiOn: Constructing architect. experienCe: 4 years at TFF Engineering 2005-2009, 3 years at ADproject 2002-2005. language skills: English, Italian & Danish. iT experienCe: AutoCAD 2011. COnTaCT:, Mobile: 50110653 spOuse: Chiara Stevanato FrOm: Italy seeking wOrk in: København or nearby areas QualiFiCaTiOn: Bachelor degree in Physics. experienCe: Now completing the Master’s degree in Physics at Københavns Universitet. lOOking FOr: Research in Physics. Research projects related to scientific areas. language skills: Written and spoken Italian, written and spoken English, written and Spoken French, very basic written and spoken Danish (still attending a second level course). iT experienCe: Operating systems: Windows, Linux. Programming languages: basic C, C++; Python. COnTaCT: Tel: 41681741 spOuse: Chia-Pei CHEN FrOm: Taiwan seeking wOrk in: Business Chinese/ Tutorial Chinese teaching in corporations, institutions or International schools. QualiFiCaTiOn: A certified teacher of teaching Chinese as a second language. A degree in Social Science discipline. Continuously participation in training program (organized by Beijing Hanban of CHINA and CBS) to teach Chinese to foreigners in western context. Enrolment to distance Chinese teaching education system that keeps professional Chinese teachers resourceful. experienCe: I am a certified teacher of teaching Chinese as a second language to foreigners. And I have started teaching Chinese with English in my class for 2 years. I design suitable materials to teach Chinese with different phonetic systems (PinYin for China and HongKong, and Mandarin Phonetic Symbols for Taiwan) as well as to interpret differences between simplified and traditional Chinese characters. My past positions were Chinese language-related, such as: reporter, translator and social science researcher. Students who I taught before regard me as a sincere, discreet teacher who helps learners to progress in short time. lOOking FOr: Business Chinese/ Tutorial Chinese teaching. language skills: Chinese (mother tongue), English (Fluent), French (basic), Danish (beginner). iT experienCe: Word Office, SPSS statistic software, Basic Video and Audio editing, Blog writing. COnTaCT:, Tel: 25 81 65 18


spOuse: Deepak Kumar Koneri FrOm: India seeking wOrk in: Copenhagen QualiFiCaTiOn: M.Sc in Electrical Engineering specialization in Embedded Systems (Jönköping, Sweden), B.Tech in Electrical and Electronics Engineering (Hyderabad, India). experienCe: Worked as Electrical Distribution Design Engineer in Electrical Consultant company for more than 2 years. I was responsible from the start of design definition phase till the implementation phase of individual project. lOOking FOr: Full and part time job opportunity in Energy, Robust Electronics design, PCB Design, Thermal Analyst, Design & Modelling of power systems, power optimization, simulation and also in constructional, architectural consulting organization. language skills: English (Fluent), Hindi (Mother Tongue), Swedish (Basic) and Danish(Basic, Currently learning). iT experienCe: MS-Office (word, Excel, Power point, Visio), CFD (Mentor Graphics FloTHERM, FloVENT, Noesis OPTIMUS, Electrical CAD, Assembly Programming (PIC 16f77, 8086,8051), WireMOM, Telelogic SDL-99, C and VHDL. COnTaCT:, 71561151 spOuse: Lena Schulz zur Wiesch FrOm: Berlin, Germany seeking wOrk in: Copenhagen and Capital Region. QualiFiCaTiOn: Cand. scient. pol. from the Humboldt-University Berlin and London School of Economics. experienCe: Seven years work experience from the German Parliament (EU-consultant) and as distinguished research associate at the Humboldt-University (urban planning). Strong analytical and inter-cultural skills. Team-worker. lOOking FOr: Jobs in consulting, public administration, politics, NGOs, international institutions or companies. language skills: German (mother tongue), English, Spanish, French, Danish (all fluently). iT experienCe: Microsoft Office, CMS. COnTaCT: spOuse: Vadim Fedulov FrOm: USA seeking wOrk in: Pre-clinical or clinical/ biotech or academia/ Copenhagen region (100km radius). QualiFiCaTiOn: Ph.D., Biological Sciences (2008). experienCe: 5 years research experience in biotech and 6 years in academic settings. For full experience summary, please visit: lOOking FOr: Position in research, project management, writing, editing, teaching, or new challenging career opportunities. language skills: English (native), Russian (native), Danish (completed Module1 at Studieskolen). iT experienCe: Proficient in both Mac and PC OS, MS Office (Excel, Word, Powerpoint etc.), StatView, Adobe (Photoshop, Illustrator). COnTaCT: and mobile tel: +45 41 83 36 60 spOuse: Suheir Sharkas FrOm: Syria seeking wOrk in: Copenhagen, Odense, Aarhus and the nearby areas of the mentioned cities. QualiFiCaTiOn: MBA–International Management, Bachelor in English Literature. lOOking FOr: Positions in Organizations/Companies in the fields of: Administration and organization, Event & Project Management, and Assistance Management. language skills: Arabic: Native speaker, English: Fluent (understanding, speaking and writing), German: Fluent (understanding, speaking and writing), Danish: Basic 3.3 (understanding, speaking and writing). iT experienCe: Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Outlook, Access, Power Point) and web publishing. COnTaCT:, Tel: 533 721 20

Biotech Job Vacancies Ferring System Administrator, Infrastructure, CIS

Deadline: 12/10/2011

Novozymes Research Scientist Customer Service & Logistics Coordinator

Deadline: 21/10/2011 Deadline: 24/10/2011

IB MYP & DP VIsual art teacher

Novo Nordisk SAP Master Data Responsible (Purchasing) Haemostasis Assay Scientist Value Communication Manager Medical Information Scientist - Novo Nordisk Library Research Technician – beta cell regeneration Process Development Specialist Process Developer Principal Scientist Obesity & Metabolism Post Doctoral Position in Oral Drug Delivery Global Clinical Compliance - Senior GCP Regulatory Country Coordinator Scientist within autoimmunity and pharmacology Research Scientist Post Doctoral Research Fellowships Temporary Non-clinical Safety Scientist / Toxicologist Research Scientists for Biophysical and Structural Characterization Global Pricing Manager Global Health Economics Manager Victoza Microbiology expert

Deadline: 08/10/2011 Deadline: 08/10/2011 Deadline: 10/10/2011 Deadline: 10/10/2011 Deadline: 09/10/2011 Deadline: 09/10/2011 Deadline: 09/10/2011 Deadline: 10/10/2011 Deadline: 10/10/2011 Deadline: 14/10/2011 Deadline: 14/10/2011 Deadline: 16/10/2011 Deadline: 16/10/2011 Deadline: 16/10/2011 Deadline: 21/10/2011 Deadline: 24/10/2011 Deadline: 28/10/2011 Deadline: 28/10/2011 Deadline: 01/11/2011

temporary position, maternity leave cover for one year, to start January 5th 2012 The successful applicant should be a qualified teacher with a strong background in Visual Arts teaching and at least two years full time teaching experience in this field. Applicants should have a desire to work collaboratively across the curriculum. Previous experience with both the MYP and DP is highly desirable. We are looking for an excellent classroom practitioner who has: • A strong work ethic; • Great collaboration skills; • A willingness and commitment to contribute to the development of the curriculum • programme; • A willingness and commitment to contribute to the greater school community; • The ability to assess and meet the needs of diverse learners. To apply for the position please submit a one page letter of application outlining your strengths and what you would bring to the school, together with a CV (no more than two pages), giving the names of two current referees. Applications must be received by October 21st, 2011, to: Dr. Caroline Brokvam, Senior School Principal Addressed to the attention of: Ms. Lesley McDonald Copenhagen International School Stockholmsgade 59 2100 Copenhagen Ø Denmark

For more information and other job vacancies visit our webpage

Stockholmsgade 59, 2100 Copenhagen Ø T +45 3946 3309



The COpenhagen pOsT

7 - 13 October 2011

Massive fine in denmark’s first ever ‘sampling’ copyright case PeteR StanneRS

Peter stanners Fears that 750,000 kroner costs could set dangerous precedent


Former Djuma Soundsystem member lars Bjarno (left) with Mikkas Skulstad, the groups one remaining member. They are liable to pay over a million kroner in damages for sampling a rare fusion-jazz record. They are now appealing the verdict.

the rights to the track. Bjarno emailed Meistrup acknowledging that what they had done was wrong and asked if they could strike a deal. Attempts to settle out of court failed, and in early 2009 Meistrup sued. Bjarno, Thomasen, and Skulstad – the one remaining member of Djuma Soundsystem – represented themselves during the case. On September 26 they lost and were ordered to pay Meistrup and Engin 747,182.82 kroner within two weeks as well as 250,000 kroner compensation for investigative costs and 111,139 kroner court costs. In total, they owe 1,108,321.82 kroner. In some ways the case is uncomplicated. Djuma Soundsystem sampled a song without permission. The sample was then used in a new song that they registered as their own with Koda. They earned money from the song using the stolen sample without crediting Engin’s contribution. But according to Bjarno, the question is not whether Engin is owed money and credit for ‘Les Djinns’, but rather how much. Sampling is a common feature of modern music. It involves taking snippets of other people’s music and using it in your own, often altered to the extent whereby its original source is difficult to hear. Bjarno argued that this is normal practice not only in music, but in most creative industries. The sample used in ‘Les Djinns’ was the guitar intro to Engin’s ‘Turkish Showbiz’. The 10-second sample is looped and played at length throughout the track. According to Skulstad’s statement to the court, while the sample is a prominent part of the melody, it is only one of about 50 instrumental layers. The court, however, viewed the track differently. Instead of regarding ‘Les Djinns’ as an original song that used a sample from

apology: Last week’s crossword had the correct clues but the wrong grid. We hope this became quickly obvious, and apologise for any inconvenience this caused.

‘Turkish Showbiz’, the court decided ‘Les Djinns’ is in fact a rearrangement, or remix, of ‘Turkish Showbiz’, in which case Djuma Soundsystem are only entitled to 16 percent of the royalties. Engin and Meistrup now own – and are owed – 84 percent of the royalties, far more than the 30 percent originally calculated by Koda. The case is not entirely straightforward, however. Bjarno claimed they only earned 140,000 kroner on ‘Les Djinns’, while

Meistrup alleged they earned 848,000 kroner (the sum used by the judge). Meistrup also claimed to have spent between 500,000 kroner and 600,000 kroner and lost about 40,000 kroner in earnings pursuing the case. But with emails showing that the members of Djuma Soundsystem actively sought to strike a deal outside of court, these costs are hard to fathom, especially when they are not broken down in the court documents.

Who is ... pilou asbæk? victoria steffensen


HAT’S THE cost of stealing ten seconds of music? Over a million kroner it turns out. That was the verdict at the end of Denmark’s first ever music copyright case involving sampling that ended last week. The verdict against electro group Djuma Soundsystem for using an unauthorised sample in their track ‘Les Djinns’ has shocked many inside and outside the music industry. Speaking to The Copenhagen Post, former member Lars Bjarno accepted that what they did was stupid, but still cannot understand the size of the fine: 747,182.82 kroner plus costs. “We were young and stupid,” Bjarno said, adding that they had tried to find a way to reimburse the copyright holder. “We want to pay. But we don’t want to pay a ridiculous amount that we haven’t even made on the record.” In 2003, Bjarno, Mikkas Skulstad and Frantz Vilmer Thomasen released ‘Les Djinns’ as electro group Djuma Soundsystem. The track used a looped (repeated) sample from an obscure jazz-fusion track called ‘Turkish Showbiz’ from the LP ‘Marmaris Love’ by Atilla Engin. The LP was bought in a second-hand shop for ten kroner by Thomasen. Not wanting to put off their record label, EMI, they lied and said the song did not use any samples. It was released and sold 150 copies. In 2006, after being dropped by EMI, they signed to Berlinbased label Get Physical. Their new label thought ‘Les Djinns’ had potential and asked if they wanted to rerelease it. “That’s when we got cold feet,” Bjarno explained. They set about trying to track down Atilla Engin to get the sample cleared. Originally from Turkey, Engin had lived in Denmark throughout the ‘80s, where he recorded and released ‘Turkish Showbiz’. The group eventually discovered that he had moved to Brazil and through an email correspondence started to discuss handing him a share of the royalties through the Danish music rights management organisation Koda. Court documents reveal how over the next few years the three members of Djuma Soundsystem attempted to strike a deal with Engin. In 2006 Engin agreed over email to let Djuma Soundsystem use the sample, but never replied to a follow-up email that contained a written contract. Without it, Engin could not claim his share of the money. Koda, after listening to the track, thought Engin was entitled to 20 to 30 percent of the royalties. But in 2008, it was revealed that a danish man named Per Meistrup actually owned

He’s a film and television actor. Where would I know him from? At the moment he is starring in DR1’s successful primetime show ‘Borgen’. You can catch it every Sunday at 8pm. Mind you, if you can’t speak Danish you may be a little confused. What’s the show about? It’s a fictional story about the Danish parliament, centred on the first ever Danish female prime minister. Although in its second series, it has suddenly become very relevant due to Helle Thorning-Schmidt’s election win. So what does this Pilou look like? Hard to describe: average height, mousey coloured hair, and an unusual kind of face that you only find in Scandinavia, if you know what I mean. I imagine many of the Vikings busy pillaging the globe looked a little like him. can he act? Yep. Amongst other things, he has starred in the film ‘Worlds Apart’ (To Verdener), which received good critical reviews. Also, he has recently been awarded one of the German film industry’s ‘Shooting Star’ awards given to promising young European actors. Previous winners have included Rachel Weisz and Carey Mulligan. But isn’t that the cheesiest award

The major issue of the case revolved around what constitutes a sample is and whether the judge understood the nature of modern music. While Djuma Soundsystem argued – with support from Koda – that the sample was 10 seconds long, Meistrup argued in the court documents that “all of [Engin’s] original composition is used, up to three minutes play time.” Ralf Christensen in newspaper Information criticised the

judge’s lack of understanding after the verdict. “It’s a harsh verdict not only because of its economic burden, which may affect Danish music in a way similar to what we’ve seen happen with American hip hop. It is also an expression of the court’s lack of understanding for the development of modern music.” Being the first case of its kind to ever make it to a Danish court, the judge had nothing to refer to, however. And with Djuma Soundsytem choosing to represent themselves and appearing – by Bjarno’s own admission – underprepared, the judge’s decision to side with the plaintiff is not unsurprising. Djuma Soundystem have now hired a lawyer and are appealing a judgement that Bjarno believes could stifle Danish music if left unchallenged. “I don’t want to be broke for the rest of my life. But the judgement sets a precedent for all the other people facing cases like these,” Bjarno said. “What it all boils down to is letting bygones be bygones. There’s some money here; let’s share it in a fair and decent way. I think we should pay and acknowledge that we made a mistake and we’re sorry.” See online version of this story to hear the songs for yourself

text 29 The Copenhagen Post Quick Crossword No 366 No 366

name ever?! It sounds more like a TV talent show from the 70s – something David Hasslehoff might have won in his youth. That Pilou name is rather unusual. It’s his ‘stage name’. His given name is Johan Philip Pilou Asbæk. I thought it was a rice dish to accompany your Chicken Tikka, but Pilou apparently means ‘little Philip’ in France. What about family? He has been in a steady relationship with actress Anna Bro for the past three years. Any children? He’s only 29! Mind you, when asked by MetroXpress what got him angry when he was travelling, he answered: “Light-haired Scandinavian children”! He felt that they could do what ever they liked because the parents couldn’t be bothered to control them. I’ve got news for you, Asbæk – children with other hair colours can also be annoying. Maybe you should think hard before procreating.



1. Brief (5) 1. Bean-plant (7-6) 4. Wrap up (7) 2. Speechify (5) 8. Unyielding (7) 3. Salver (4) 9. Happen again (5) 4. Ensnare (6) 10. Ogle (4) 5. Decisions (8) 11. Hand treatment (8) 6. Varnish (7) 13. In addition (4) 7. Upright (13) 14. Heavenly body (4) 12. Pledged (8) 16. Final (8) 13. Murmurs (7) 17. Fashionable (4) 15. Dress (6) 20. Wants (5) 18. Lift up (5) 21. Beginning (7) 19. Gentle (4) 22. Remainder (7) 23. Put off (5) Post Quick Crossword No 365 Across: 3 Abundance; 8 Oily; 9 Starboard; 10 Speech; 11 Heard; 14 Ruler; 15 Dear; 16 Erica; 18 Case; 20 Dress; 21 Smart; 24 Serene; 25 Impromptu; 26 Acid; 27 Incessant. Down: 1 Construct; 2 Sleepless; 4 Both; 5 Nerve; 6 Aboard; 7 Cure; 9 Score; 11 Hoist;


7 - 13 October 2011


Journalist who the Libyans still refer to as King Knud, 70 years after his death WWW.KNUDHOLMBOE.COM.

While the Brits had Lawrence of Arabia, Denmark had Knud Holmboe (left) who alerted the world to the atrocities carried out in Libya (centre) by the Italian army (right)

ALEXIS KUNSAK To the naked eye, Ali Ahmed was just another Bedouin, albeit driving a 1929 Chevrolet, but he was in fact a Danish undercover journalist gathering incendiary information to blow the lid on Italy’s war crimes in its northern African colonies


PUT ON my Moroccan burnous (the Arab cloak) and in a few moments I was unrecognisable. The colour of my skin and my blue eyes were of no import, as the people of northern Morocco are often tall and fair. The little porter was busy. As I wanted to leave as soon as possible, I went up to the counter and asked for my bill. He looked at me a moment, surprised, before he recognised me. “But, señor, why are you wearing Arab dress?” “Because I am going to travel through the country.” This was the start of Knud Holmboe’s trip across the deserts of north Africa in 1930. The Danish journalist published this tale in his 1931 book, ‘Ørkenen brænder’ (published in English as ‘Desert Encounter’). His account of Italian conduct in northern Africa was so controversial in Italy that it was not translated and published in Italian until 2007. In response to the book’s widespread release and success in English in the 1930s, the Italian government launched a smear campaign questioning Holmboe’s reliability as an eyewitness. The Italian military were scandalised over his portrayal of General Rodolfo Graziani, a man known in Italy as ‘the founder of peace in Libya’ but dubbed ‘the Butcher from Fezzan’ by the Libyans. Following the Italo-Turkish war (1911-12), the Ottoman Empire lost

the provinces of Tripolitania, Fezzan, and Cyrenaica to Italy. The whole area was then known as Italian North Africa until 1927, when the territory was split into two colonies: Italian Cyrenaica and Italian Tripolitania, both run by Italian governors. Over this period some 150,000 Italians settled there, making up around 20 percent of the total population. In the 1920s and 30s, the Italians were waging a war of subjugation against the local population in presentday Libya. Historian Ilan Pappé estimates that between 1928 and 1932 the Italian military “killed half the Bedouin population, directly or through disease and starvation in camps”. Another estimate by the Italian historian Emilio Gentile sets the number of victims at about 50,000. However, the violence had been kept secret from the world at large, and it could have evaded the media spotlight altogether if it hadn’t been for the sudden appearance in early 1930 of Arabicspeaking Holmboe. The young Dane often went by the name of ‘Ali Ahmed’ on his journey. The 28-year-old had driven in from across the desert and gained clearance from both sides as a European by birth, but also as a convert to Islam whose sympathies lay with the Bedouins. Coming in from Morocco in his 1929 Chevrolet, Holmboe became a witness to Mussolini’s brutal crackdown in eastern Libya. Italian forces under two generals, Pietro Badoglio and Rodolfo Graziani, were leading pacification campaigns, which had quickly turned into bloody acts of repression. Resistance leaders were executed or escaped into exile. Military tribunals sentenced those caught collaborating with resistance fighters to death on a daily

But, señor, why are you wearing Arab dress?” “Because I am going to travel through the

Holmboe preferred his Chevrolet (top left) to camel (top right), but the fugitive Bedouins (bottom left and right) didn’t have this luxury

basis. Holmboe estimated around 30 were executed each day in the province of Cyrenaica in eastern Libya. Holmboe drove into the mountains east of Benghazi, also the location of the recent fighting between revolutionaries and Muammar Gaddafi’s troops. Together with an American and a 12-yearold Arabic boy, he was able to convince rebels he was on their side by reciting passages from the Koran. One group of fighters he met in the mountains told him stories of their suffering around a late-night campfire. Many had seen their homes and water supplies raided. One man had lost his beloved daughter, only to find her again in a brothel in Benghazi. When she begged him to shoot her, he complied. Armed with these first-hand accounts, Holmboe had found a cause that would fill an entire book.

Fierce resistance to the Italians continued from a strongly nationalistic group of Sunni Muslims led by Omar Al Mukhtar, centred in the Jebel Akhdar Mountains of Cyrenaica. By 1930, however, Mussolini wanted results. Muktar was caught and executed, and General Graziani brought in Eritrea mercenaries to clear out the mountains of eastern Libya. The forced migration of more than 100,000 Cyrenaican people took them to Italian concentration camps. After two decades of violent suppression Italy had predominated. In 1934, Italy adopted the name ‘Libya’ (originating from the Greek name for north Africa) as the official name of the

colony (made up of the three provinces of Cyrenaica, Tripolitania and Fezzan). Later, under the terms of the 1947 peace treaty with the Allies after the Second World War, Italy relinquished all claims to Libya. Meanwhile, continuing his work in the Middle East, Holmboe was killed under mysterious circumstances near the border of Saudi Arabia in 1931 at the age of 29. To this day, he retains hero status in Libya, but in Denmark he is still the lesser-known elder brother of composer Vagn Holmboe. A complete English translation of Holmboe’s book ‘Desert Encounter’ can be downloaded from the website dedicated to the author at


P perfor uppet ma Sunda nce every y at 1 4.00 Free a dmiss childre ion for n and accom panyin g adu lts

Charlottenborg is the largest and most beautiful venue for contemporary art in Copenhagen, and is situated directly off Kongens Nytorv. The autumn programme has just started and includes major exhibitions by Simon Starling – whose project features an amazing puppet theatre – and Nina Beier.

Kunsthal Charlottenborg Nyhavn 2, 1051 Copenhagen K Tue to Sun 11am to 5pm (Wed till 8pm) Photo: Anders Sune Berg

The Copenhagen Post: October 7 - 13  

The Copenhagen Post, Denmark's only English-language newspaper

The Copenhagen Post: October 7 - 13  

The Copenhagen Post, Denmark's only English-language newspaper