Protesters gather to demonstrate against Denmark’s new asylum rules

Gathering of 1,500 includes one-minute silence for refugees who lost their lives along the way

The demonstrators chanted slogans like "Refugees welcome"(Photo: iStock) The demonstrators chanted slogans like "Refugees welcome"(Photo: iStock)
February 1st, 2016 10:37 pm| by Shifa Rahaman
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Yesterday’s rain was not enough to dampen the spirits of the 1,500-strong crowd of protesters who gathered in the capital to demonstrate against the government’s new asylum rules.

Not in my name
Though the rain and wind made it almost impossible to hear the chants of the protesters who marched their way from Nørreport Station to Kongens Nytorv in Copenhagen yesterday, spirits remained high in what was a final bid to protest against the new asylum laws before they are formally signed by Queen Margrethe.

In a demonstration calling itself ‘Not in my Name’, protesters marched through the streets of Copenhagen chanting slogans like “Asylum for all”, “No fascists on our streets” and “Refugees welcome”.

Take back Denmark
“We must take back Denmark from Lars Løkke Rasmussen and his minions,” Bwala Sørensen, one of the organisers of the event, told the crowds that had gathered.

The gathering included people from all over Denmark who had turned up in a gesture of solidarity.

I’m tired of the way our politicians are talking about refugees. Why don’t we start by saying that of course we help?” BT quoted Peter Marckmann, who travelled from Roskilde, as saying.

Vigil
Though the demonstrators didn’t cause any major traffic delays, cyclists used their bells copiously, clearly annoyed at having to maneouver their way through the mass of people.

The demonstration included a vigil for refugees who had lost their lives at sea and on their journeys en route to Europe, and at 18:30, Mikkel Radicke, one of the organisers of the event, passed around lit torches and a one-minute silence was observed.

“I think we have made an impact,” said Radicke just before the event ended.