Claus Oxfeldt, the chairman of the Danish police union Politiforbundet, is calling for a new vote to keep Denmark in the co-operative European police force Europol.
Danes rejected a proposal late last year that would have seen the country replace its current blanket opt-out of EU justice rules with a model that would allow them to choose to participate in some areas of EU policy on a case-by-case basis.
Since the ‘no vote’, there has been disagreement over whether Denmark would be able to remain a part of Europol.
A costly ‘no’
The parties who called for a ‘no’ in the referendum said that Denmark would be able to stay in Europol by striking a parallel agreement.
However, Oxfeldt said the EU’s first deputy chairman, Frans Timmermans, has made it clear that Denmark “should not be under any illusions” about being able to negotiate a parallel agreement on Europol.
“It would be a disaster for Denmark,” Oxfeldt told Metroxpress.
“We have an urgent need for close international police co-operation in terms of cybercrime, terrorism, transnational crime and this whole refugee and immigrant situation.”
Timmermans spoke to the Danish Industry Summit in Copenhagen on Tuesday.
“You cannot be half pregnant,” he told TV2 News. “Either you are or you are not. If you vote to leave Europol, then you are out.”
New vote needed
Oxfeldt now hopes there will be a new referendum on Denmark’s membership of Europol.
“We need a referendum on Europol,” he said, stressing that the parties who recommended a ‘no vote’ last year must live up to their election promises.
“They said that a ‘no vote’ would have no consequences for Denmark and that Danish police would continue to be a member of Europol,” he said.
“Now all of the evidence suggests we cannot continue if we do not hold a new, separate vote on Europol.”