Man who attacked Danish PM sentenced to 12 days in custody : The Tribune India

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Man who attacked Danish PM sentenced to 12 days in custody

Man who attacked Danish PM sentenced to 12 days in custody

Mette Frederiksen. AP file



Copenhagen, June 8

A 39-year old man who assaulted Denmark's Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen in Copenhagen on Friday causing her to suffer a neck injury was sentenced today to 12 days in custody, Danish police said.

The assault took place in a square in the city centre on Friday when a man walked up to the prime minister and hit her.

Frederiksen's office said the incident had left the politician "shocked" and suffering a minor whiplash injury.

All the prime minister's official events on Saturday have been cancelled, her office added on Saturday.

The assault comes two days before Danes head to the polls in the European Union election. A month ago, three German politicians suffered assaults ahead of European Parliament and district council elections and more attacks followed earlier this week.

Frederiksen, was able to walk away and had no outward signs of harm after the assault, Soren Kjergaard, a local coffee-shop worker, told Reuters after seeing her being escorted away by security.

Copenhagen police said it did not think that the man, who has denied wrongdoing, was politically motivated in his act. "In light of the fact that the accused has no connection to Denmark, there is a risk of escape," the judge at the Copenhagen City court said as one reason for the custodial sentence, according to broadcaster DR.

"My good friend and Danish colleague Mette Frederiksen was attacked in the street last night in Copenhagen. This is completely unacceptable and is an attack on our open, democratic societies," Norway Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere told news agency NTB.

Ursula von der Leyen, the European Commission president wrote on X on Friday:

"I was so shocked at the news of you being assaulted tonight. I condemn this despicable act which goes against everything we believe and fight for in Europe. I wish you strength and courage - I know you have plenty of both."

Political violence appears to be rising across the Europe, where societies are deeply polarized in the face of widespread migration from the Middle East and Africa and are badly shaken by the war in Ukraine, the largest conflict on the continent since World War II. The recent violence has come in the run up to elections taking place this weekend to the European Parliament, the legislative branch of the 27-member bloc.

The most serious attack so far has been that against Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico, who struggled for his life after multiple shots were fired on him on May 15 as he greeted supporters.

In France, the lead Socialist candidate in the EU elections, Raphael Glucksmann, was pelted with eggs and paint-filled projectiles at a May Day event last month. Last month, Berlin’s deputy mayor was attacked at an event in a local library by a man her from behind. — Agencies


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