In the latest salvo against the country's minorities, Denmark will cap the number of "non-Western" people in neighbourhoods.

Denmark has announced that it will limit the number of ethnic minorities in neighbourhoods to up to 30 percent in an apparent bid to "reduce the risk of religious and cultural parallel societies."

Some have branded the decision to limit "non-Western" residents as a "white supremacist" idea that avoids tackling racism in the country and keeps immigrant communities from integrating into society.

The announcement by the Social Democratic government will scrap the controversial term "ghetto" currently being used in legislation to describe immigrant neighbourhoods. 

Instead the government will opt for the term "non-Western" arguing that neighbourhoods should not allow ethnic minorities to exceed 30 percent within 10 years.

Denmark has had some of the most draconian immigration policies in Europe, which the leftist Social Democratic party led by Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has continued since gaining power in 2019.

In 2015, the country ran a series of controversial ads in Lebanese newspapers warning refugees to stay away.

The country in 2017 enacted a so-called 'jewellery law' which would see the state confiscate assets from refugees above $1,300 using the proceeds to pay for their upkeep. The United Nations described the decision as "at a minimum inhumane and degrading."

In 2018, the right-wing Danish government introduced laws that only deepened ethnic divisions in the country by designating areas with more than 50 percent ethnic minorities as "ghetto areas."

Under the proposals, children would be forcefully separated from their parents, starting from one to receive special education. Crimes committed in ghetto areas could also result in a double sentence.

International condemnation hasn't, however, dented consecutive governments enacting incrementally draconian legislation. More recently, the Danish state created an island where it would banish refugees until their case was processed.

Even as the civil war in Syria continues, the Danish government considers the parts of the country controlled by the Assad regime safe enough to return refugees. This year it became the first European country to deport Syrians back to the country.

The latest announcement is part of an anti-immigrant political consensus that has emerged in the country that spans the left and the right.

Following the latest decision, one activist said, "we need to stop putting Denmark on a progressive pedestal."

In 2018 the country banned the face-veil for Muslim women, which activists decried as enacting laws that "exclusively target the Muslim minority."

Increasingly Muslims feel that they have become scapegoats in the country. In the run-up to the 2019 elections, there was an increase in anti-Muslim rhetoric resulting in hate crimes against the community.

Source: TRT World