Denmark: Al-Jazeera movie airs, Denmark not so racist

Denmark: Al-Jazeera movie airs, Denmark not so racist

Update on this post: Denmark: Al-Jazeera to air 'Denmark is racist' movie

According to Danish broadcaster DR, most of the documentary was balanced, and all parties were given equal voice.

Politicians, police, gang members from both sides of the gang conflict, regular immigrants, all got air-time on their thoughts on Denmark and the integration issue.

The movie started by saying that Denmark is one of the safest societies in Europe, but that the country had become more and more insecure in recent years due to the ongoing gang conflict between the bikers and the immigrant gangs.

This was followed by a description of how the first immigrants came to Denmark in the 60s to contribute to building the country and how refugees from the Balkans came in the 90s to live in safety in Denmark.

The movie also shows one of Denmark's asylum centers and describes how people live here for years: the program speaks with an asylum seekers from Iraq who fled Saddam Hussein's regime.

He tells that he could be killed in Iraq by soldiers very quickly, but that he's here in Denmark for an undetermined time and therefore he's dying inside but quietly.

Social minister Karen Ellemann was also interviewed in the program, and she defends the policy of the Danish government: she says that their policy is tough, but fair.

"We don't violate any conventions, but we have certain rules for those who come here," says Karen Ellemann in the movie.

After twenty minutes and a commercial break, the movie turns up the criticism of Denmark a bit.

The program explains that the first generation who came to Denmark fared well and had good sources of income. But some of the 2nd and 3rd generation have more difficulties getting a job and getting along in Denmark.

The Arab viewers were told that some immigrants who haven't fared so well get together in gangs.

The program quotes justice minister Brian Mikkelsen who says that the immigrants who cause trouble should be deported from the country.

From there the program cuts to Nørrebro to Copenhagen where different young immigrants are interviewed, anonymously. They say that the bikers shoot them like lunatics and that they hope the bikers die in hell.

The youth also say that the police sympathizes with the bikers and helps them.

The youth say that Hell's Angles are racists and that therefore they shoot them. They think that the on-going gang conflict is caused by racism.

Hell's Angels spokesperson Jørn "Jønke" Nielsen denies that and says they don't have a conflict with anybody. Instead, it's the media who's fanning the flames.

Finally the documentary turns down the criticism, and the Arab viewers meet singer and rapper Issam B from the multi-ethnic ban Outlandish.

He says he's never met racism, and that the same goes for his father who's come to Denmark.

He thinks racism isn't just a Danish problem, but an international problem.

Source: DR (Danish)

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