While defending recently adopted measures aimed at making deportations simpler and easier,
Danish Justice Minister Søren Pape Poulsen of the Conservative People’s Party admitted that country faces a “big problem” with criminal migrants.
Minister Poulsen’s statements follow newly released results from a study which found that Somali migrants were the largest single foreign community in Denmark to be convicted for violent offenses, with 916 convictions between 2014 and 2018 – making them 3.6 times more likely to commit violent crimes than Danish men of the same age and income, according to a report from the Danish newspaper B.T.
Following Somalis with the most violent criminal convictions were Iraqis and Turks
Unlike many of their Western European counterparts, Danish politicians haven’t attempted to sugar-coat the problem
“Your data clearly shows that there is a big problem with criminal foreigners that we should not have in our society,” the Justice Minister said while he defended the Danish government’s migration policies.
Poulsen also mentioned that he had recently proposed a bill in the Danish parliament which would allow judges to serve migrants who fail to show up for their court dates deportation orders.
“We have tightened the expulsion rules so that we can more easily expel foreigners,” he said.
The newly elected MEP Peter Kofold of the populist Danish People’s Party also commented on the statistics which showed Somali migrants had been convicted of 1,111 crimes in the previous five years.
“These are pretty wild numbers, those that BT has uncovered. They support what we, the Danish People’s Party, have been pointing out for years, that we in Denmark have a challenge with immigration from a number of countries in Africa and the Middle East,” Kofod said.
“It’s tragic, and we have to respond to that. We must do this by sending people back home and not taking new ones in. It must be the lesson after too many years when Denmark and the rest of Western Europe have had too much of immigration from certain areas,” Kofod added.
In 2018, Danish Migration Minister Inger Støjberg directly addressed Somali migrants in Denmark, encouraging them to return to their homelands and rebuild saying, “if you no longer need our protection and your life and health are no longer at risk in your home country, and specifically in Somalia, you must, of course, return home and rebuild the country from which you came from.”
Individuals from the Danish Social Liberal Party hold similar views and have asserted that foreign felons need to leave Denmark. Lotte Rod, the party’s legal rapporteur, stated that it’s ‘terrible’ that these kinds of crimes are being committed in Denmark.
“The problem, however, is that there are countries, to which we cannot deport people. This applies, for instance, to Somalia and Syria,” Rod mentioned.
Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen has also weighed in on the issue, saying that although he would prefer that Somali migrants left the country on their own, but that he certainly wouldn’t rule out the option of forced deportations.
According to Statistics Denmark, as of 2019, nearly 800,000 – over 13 percent – of Denmark’s total population of 5.8 million was comprised of immigrants and their descendants. Of that 800,000 people, 500,000 were non-Western immigrants.