Last Updated: Friday, 11 July 2014, 13:14 GMT

State of the World's Minorities 2007 - Denmark

Publisher Minority Rights Group International
Publication Date 4 March 2007
Cite as Minority Rights Group International, State of the World's Minorities 2007 - Denmark, 4 March 2007, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/48a97134c.html [accessed 12 July 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

In March 2006, Doudou Diène, United Nations Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, referred to the recent controversial depictions of the Prophet Mohammed in Danish newspaper cartoons and the subsequent violent reactions in many countries. He said: 'the cartoons illustrated the increasing emergence of the racist and xenophobic currents in everyday life'. He also pointed to the political context in Denmark, where an extremist political party enjoyed 13 per cent of the vote and had formed part of the governing coalition, and stated that 'the development of Islamophobia or any racism and racial discrimination always took place in the context of the emergence of strong racist, extremist political parties and a corresponding absence of reaction against such racism by the country's political leaders'. In March 2006, Denmark's Director of Public Prosecutions upheld the earlier decision not to press criminal charges against those responsible for the cartoons on the basis that the drawings were protected by legislation on freedom of speech and did not violate bans on racist and blasphemous speech. In retaliation, the Islamic Faith Community, an umbrella organization of 27 radical Muslim organizations in Denmark, is lodging a complaint against the state of Denmark with the Office of the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva.

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