International News in Brief: Floating nuclear power plant approaching Danish waters

In other news, it’s mostly outgoings as ministers pay trips to Afghanistan and the US and a nurse picks up an incontinence award

Akademik Lomonosov, the world’s largest floating nuclear power plant, yesterday embarked from St Petersburg on a voyage that will take it through Danish waters next week.

The 220 million dollar, 144 metre-long, 21,500-tonne vessel will then sail up the coast of Norway to the Russian port of Murmansk, where it will be loaded with uranium. The estimated arrival date is May 20.

From there it will travel to the Russian Arctic port of Pevek where it will replace the Bilibino power plant.

A possible terrorist target?
Greenpeace Denmark condemned the plans as posing an “unpredictable threat to the environment” and an “unacceptable response to the need for fossil-free energy sources”.

Furthermore, other environmental groups are concerned the vessel, which has a crew of 69, could be targeted by terrorists.

However, the power plant’s producer Rosatom has attracted interest in its work from the likes of China, Algeria, Indonesia and Argentina.

Ministers underline co-operation on Afghan trip
Inger Støjberg and Ulla Tørnæs – the respective ministers for immigration and integration, and development – have hailed the “prospects” of Afghanistan after paying a trip to the Asian country on which they met President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani. On average, Denmark has annually given Afghanistan 425 million kroner this century. Discussions touched on the country receiving rejected Afghan asylum-seekers and how Denmark can help the country with reception and reintegration programs. “The government’s policy is that when we support a developing country, we have a clear expectation the country will co-operate in returning its own nationals if they have been denied asylum or have been expelled from Denmark,” said Støjberg.

Cambodia’s most wanted returns to Denmark suburbia
Sam Serey, the founder of the Cambodian dissident group Khmer National Liberation Front who has been a resident in Denmark since being granted asylum in 2011, had a narrow escape last week when his visa ran out while in Thailand. One day after his arrest in Bangkok on April 25, Cambodia put in an extradition request. However, it is believed the Danish government and a human rights group intervened and that he boarded a flight to Denmark at 01:20 on Friday. Serey has always maintained the KNLF is non-violent. The government claims the group sponsors terrorist activities and that Serey tried to raise an army in Norway.

Denmark topples down press index as a result of Madsen murder
Denmark has slipped five places on the 2018 World Press Freedom Index to number nine – a fall mainly blamed on the murder of Swedish journalist Kim Wall by submariner Peter Madsen. It trailed fellow Nordic states Norway (1), Sweden (2) and Finland (4), but finished ahead of Iceland (14). Reported every year since 2002 by Reporters Without Borders, the index assesses conditions in 180 countries, and one of its main criteria is the safety and freedom of journalists.

Foreign minister on tour of the US
The foreign minister, Anders Samuelsen, yesterday began a six-day visit to the US on which he will meet the country’s newly-appointed national security adviser, John Bolton, to discuss global challenges, including those connected to Russia, Syria, Iran and North Korea. He will also open the new Danish consulate general in Houston and then travel to Seattle, where together with Princess Mary he will open a new Nordic museum.

Frederik to head Finnish delegation
Prince Frederik will visit Finland this autumn at the head of a business delegation. The September 13-14 visit will promote Danish enterprise in the areas of the maritime industry, urban solutions and Nordic cuisine. This year marks a century of diplomatic relations between the countries, as Finland was founded in December 1917 after it declared independence from the Russian Empire. Previously it was a grand duchy after ceasing to be part of Sweden in 1809.

Nurse win top incontinence prize
Charlotte Andersen, a hygiene nurse working in eldercare in Mariagerfjord Municipality, was in late April given the main award at the Global Forum On Incontinence, an annual conference in Rome, in recognition of her work in reducing urinary tract infections. At five eldercare centres in the municipality, the infection rate was reduced by between 70 and 86 percent thanks to Andersen’s strict guidelines.


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