The Danish People’s Party (DPP) is Denmark’s far-right political organization that has described as nativist, nationalist, and anti-immigrant. Among the controversial parts of the radical initiative, reported on Friday in local media is a “moratorium on the construction of mosques with minarets, claiming that such places of worship used by Muslims convey a ‘divisive symbolism,'” according to the DPP’s immigration spokesman, Martin Henriksen.
The legislator went on to state that Muslims will be “urged to perform their prayers” in less obvious spaces such as “warehouses and offices.” Additionally, the enforcement of an 8PM curfew will be enforced on unaccompanied minors without adult supervision in the so-called “ghettos.”
Left-wing responses to the detailed legislation has been overwhelmingly condemnatory. Several left-leaning senior-ranking senators in Denmark have dismissed the plan as ridiculous, claiming that it is “bloody crazy” and “insane.”
According to Russia Today, Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen’s speech on Friday was equally radical, stating firmly that some ghettos will be physically bulldozed as residents are relocated to more diverse areas. This will be the sixth government anti-ghetto proposal since 1994.
Immigration to Denmark has steadily increased in the past three decades, and as of 2014, nearly 10% of the national population consisted of immigrants. The majority of these immigrants are non-Western, hailing from countries such as Turkey, Iraq, and Pakistan. The reaction against immigration in certain European countries is not a recent phenomenon, as some Scandinavian countries have proven to be the most resilient populations to mass immigration.
In other countries, however, mass immigration has resulted in what many native citizens believe is cultural decay. Recently, France’s recently elected centrist leader Emanuel Macron proposed anti-immigration legislation, aiming towards eradicating ghettos and requiring legal identification for those staying in emergency shelters. German opinion towards foreign immigration has shifted in recent years, as Chancellor Angela Merkel’s approval rating has recently dropped to a five-year low. Evidently, there is a negative reaction against the many years of European legislation relocating non-Western migrants into large European cities.
As Denmark’s far-right grows in public approval and proposes bills in accordance with the Prime Minister, it is clear that there is clear resistance against the immigration policies concocted by the European Union. What does the future of non-Western immigration look like in Europe? Is Denmark paving a path for other countries to follow?