Danish News in Brief: Greenland wants English to replace Danish in classrooms

In other news, NorthSide decides to replace its bottle deposit system and a north Jutland asylum centre will have to replace a window or two after a shooting

Siumut wants to replace Danish with English as the second language of choice in Greenlandic classrooms.

Party chairman Kim Kielsen, the country’s PM, told DR that English offers up “more opportunities” than Danish, which has proven to be a big challenge to master.

At present, 60 percent of Greenlanders are monolingual.

Support from opposition
Additionally, only 38.2 percent of the population complete their regular schooling, 26.1 percent an upper-secondary or vocational education, and 12.1 percent a higher education, according to Statistics Greenland.

Opposition party Inuit Ataqatigiit backs Siumut’s stance.

More aid for Rohingyas 
Denmark is donating 105 million kroner to ease the plight of the 671,000 stateless Rohingyas currently residing in overcrowded camps in Bangladesh after fleeing from Myanmar last year, taking the total it has given so far to 286 million kroner. Ulla Tørnæs, the minister for development co-operation, said there was a need for “long-term” efforts. “Denmark is therefore providing grants that contain a humanitarian contribution for addressing the urgent need, while at the same time strengthening our long-term country program in Bangladesh to strengthen the resilience of local host communities,” she explained. Another 120,000 displaced Rohingyas remain in Myanmar.

Abortion story fails to provide any hard proof
Women from Middle Eastern countries such as Iran, Lebanon, Iraq and Pakistan and their descendants currently account for a sizeable proportion of Denmark’s abortions, reports Kristeligt Dagblad based on figures from Sundhedsstyrelsen. However, the newspaper failed to cite any actual figures in what was at times a confusing report that claimed women from former Yugoslavian republics also feature highly. It was also pointed out that women from Asian countries such as China, the Philippines and Vietnam accounted for a relatively high number of abortions in 2006, but that the rate had since fallen.

Shooting at Jutland asylum centre
A man fired a shotgun outside the Dronninglund asylum centre in Brovst in north Jutland early on Tuesday morning – possibly aiming at a young man and woman inside the building. Nobody was seriously hurt, but media reports suggest the couple might have sustained minor injuries caused by flying glass. The police, who were contacted at 02:37, later arrested a suspect in the nearby town at around 09:30.

Festival changes system to dissuade pant collectors from attending
NorthSide is introducing a new deposit system to combat the problem caused by collectors hassling festival guests and volunteers, and in some cases taking the returnable drinking vessels without asking. The Aarhus festival’s new system will yield a reduction to anyone returning their empty glass.