Denmark’s election was not target of foreign interference

Denmark’s parliamentary election on November 1st was not targeted for interference by foreign actors, according to a security services review.

Denmark’s election was not target of foreign interference
A person typing on a laptop. Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

The election was monitored by Danish police intelligence services PET and other authorities, which have concluded no interference took place.

“The election was therefore conducted in line with earlier election activities in Denmark, in which PET has thus far not uncovered coordinated and systematic interference work from foreign states, for instance Russia,” the agency said in a press statement.

In a threat assessment in October, PET and military intelligence agency FE said that it was “unlikely” Russia would attempt to influence the election.

READ ALSO: Why Denmark is an unlikely target for election interference

Some misinformation campaigns, such as false social media profiles, were identified however. These may also have been spotted by the Danish public or politicians, PET head of counter-espionage Anders Henriksen said in the statement.

“But PET has not seen what PET would label coordinated and systematic manipulation,” he said.

“That means that we have not seen foreign intelligence services conduct larger manipulation campaigns or operations, for example by trying to split Danes or Danish politicians,” he said.

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Denmark’s new government defends rare left-right alliance

Denmark's Social Democratic prime minister and the leader of the main right-wing party on Wednesday defended their new left-right coalition government, a rare alliance last seen 45 years ago.

Denmark's new government defends rare left-right alliance

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen and her allies on the left won a majority in a November 1st general election, but she chose instead to form a government with a small new centrist party and her traditional rival on the right, the Liberals.

“We are joining forces not because we couldn’t do otherwise, because we could have done something else”, Frederiksen told reporters at a press conference with the other two party leaders.

READ ALSO: KEY POINTS: What are the main policies of the new Danish government?

“But together we have made the decision to join forces. We choose each other at this point in our history,” she added.

Frederiksen is expected to present her cabinet on Thursday.

Danish media have described the coalition, which includes the centrist Moderates party recently founded by former prime minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen, as historic.

The Social Democrats and Liberals have only governed together once before, for just over a year in 1978-1979.

The head of the Liberals, Jakob Ellemann-Jensen, faced the toughest questioning at the press conference, after campaigning during the election to head a right-wing government and rejecting any notion of an alliance with Frederiksen.

“Should I let my pride get in the way… of doing what is right for Denmark?” he replied.

Frederiksen presented the new government’s priorities, which included an acceleration of Denmark’s defence investments after the invasion of Ukraine, and a faster reduction of CO2 emissions. The country now aims to be carbon neutral by 2045 instead of 2050.

The country of 5.9 million now also expects to reach NATO’s budget goal of 2 percent of GDP in 2030 three years earlier than planned.

The country will abolish a public holiday in order to finance the measure.

The new government also announced a tax reform, raising income taxes for the middle class, cutting taxes for high-earners, and introducing a new tax for very high earners.

In a country that has had strict curbs on immigration for the past 25 years, the government also said it would go ahead with previously announced plans to open asylum reception centres outside Europe, possibly in Rwanda, but said it prioritises working with the EU or other European countries on the plan.