Denmark: Failed integration of Blågård church Palestinians
(photo: Palestinians celebrating outside Blågård church, 1992)
Via Fyens Stiftstidende (Danish):
In 1992, a group of Lebanese-Palestinians (stateless) sought asylum in Blågård church (in Nørrebro, Copenhagen) and were finally given residence permits. A new report by Integration Minister Søren Pind (V) shows that their integration failed, and that most are on welfare.
Of the 321 stateless Palestinians, 218 received some form of welfare in 2009. According to the study, 26 of the remaining 80 people were born before 1945 and could therefore be getting a pension, which is not statistically considered welfare.
The study also shows that 63 people were sentenced to a prison sentence (conditional or unconditional) and 114 were fined in the period 1992-2009.
The Palestinians made history in 1992 when 78 of them, helped by Danish activists, occupied Blågård Church and refused to leave, after their asylum request was rejected.
A majority in Parliament (Social Liberals, Social Democrats and Socialist People's Party) passed a special law which applied only to that group of Lebanese Palestinians and which gave them residence in Denmark.