Denmark voted in a referendum to adhere to the EU’s Common Defense Policy


Since the Maastricht Treaty, the Nordic country has maintained a clause that bars it from participating in, eleven, European military operations since 2003.

Denmark's Prime Minister Mette Fredriksson voted in reference
Denmark’s Prime Minister Mette Fredriksson voted in the referendum.liselot sabroEFE
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with the war Ukraine Background, Denmark goes to vote today whether the country should end the clause that keeps it out of the common defense policy of the European Union (EU), despite the fact that, paradoxically, it is among the most NATO activists. is one of

The Danes have had four exception clauses from the European Union since the rejection of the Maastricht Treaty in June 1992. Over the next few months, the Danish Parliament negotiated four exceptions to the agreement, and in a new referendum in May 1993, a small majority voted in favor of limited accession to Maastricht which still holds defense cooperation, the euro and some parts. abandoned. legal policy.

To the rescue, the section has stopped Denmark It has participated in eleven EU military operations since 2003, including reconstruction in the Balkans, the fight against piracy in the Horn of Africa or the crackdown on human trafficking in the Mediterranean. Nor has it been able to be part of the 2015 Permanent Structured Cooperation on Defense (PESCO), with European countries cooperating more closely on security policy and the development of military technology.

Ukraine and the need for further cooperation

The parliamentary majority is overwhelmingly in favor of “yes”. Ten of the thirteen parties in the folktale want to get rid of this clause. The main opposition structures in government, from the Social Democrats, to the Liberals and Conservatives. Overall, only over 80% seats. Their main argument is that given the new security situation caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, much greater cooperation with the rest of the EU on defense matters is necessary.

The “no” is defended only by the extreme left, which views potential operations in Africa with great reluctance, and the right-wing nationalists, who fear increased spending and the weakening of NATO. “Our armed forces are currently under great pressure in terms of material and personnel,” said New Right leader Pernil Vermund. “We don’t have enough resources to participate in EU missions. It’s a matter of finances and priorities. We must focus on our regional defense and NATO.”

Among the electorate, however, the polls have shown a greater division than in parliament, albeit with the clear advantage of “yes”, leaning towards the opposite option unless undecided. may cause a surprise in part a definite distaste Towards the question, and partly the traditional . By Eurosepticism of a wide segment of the population. Perhaps the biggest challenge for Danish politicians ahead of the referendum has been to explain why it is necessary to follow the common defense policy of the European Union when Denmark already belongs to NATO, and furthermore as a founding member.

whatever it is, it’s true to say goodbye to the clause will greatly simplify Danish military policyWho has been portrayed as one of the most active activists in Europe of this century, but who has been weighed down by a sort of “dual personality” in relation to the Atlantic Alliance on the one hand, and the European Union on the other.

Although some highly oblivious foreign media have commented that the end of the clause would also mean the end of an alleged “pacifist” Denmark, the truth is that since 2001, the Danes have been the closest ally with the United Kingdom. The United States of America is actively participating in both the war in Afghanistan and Iraq. And not only in support missions, but on the front lines of battle. In fact, with 43 soldiers killed during the Afghan conflict, it is the coalition country that has suffered the most casualties in proportion to its population.

At the moment, the other three sections don’t seem to be in any danger. that the Danish economy has been one of the best resisted to the latest global crises have minimized interest in joining the euro, While the legal exception seems completely untouchable by guaranteeing a very high degree of autonomy in immigration and border control, two major aspects in the current Danish political landscape.

The fourth section is really irrelevant today. This was introduced to ensure that the citizenship of the Union does not become something like a national one or replace it altogether, but this guarantee is spelled out directly in the text of the treaty, so that it is all the EU has. apply to.

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