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Danish minister resigns over illegal decision to cull minks

Christian Fernsby ▼ | November 19, 2020
Mogens Jensen, Danish Minister for Food, Fisheries and Equal Opportunities, announced his resignation after facing intense pressure over the government's recent decision to order the culling of all farmed minks in the country without having the requisite legislation in place.
Mogens Jensen
Danish   Mogens Jensen
"Since I no longer have the sufficient majority support in the Folketing (parliament), I informed the prime minister that I want to resign from the government," Jensen said on social media.

The minister's decision came after the government's order two weeks ago to cull an estimated 17 million minks to prevent a mutated version of the coronavirus found in some farms from infecting humans. The government said it had to move quickly out of safety, but it lacked the legal basis to order the killing of healthy animals too.

"My ministry has made mistakes in connection with the government announcement of the decision to put down all minks in Denmark," Jensen said on Facebook. "I regretted this earlier. I regret it again and take responsibility for this. Especially I regret this to the many mink farmers who have been in a very unhappy situation."

The decision to cull all minks and destroy the livelihoods of Denmark's mink farmers caused a public uproar and was ferociously attacked by both the opposition and the member parties of the ruling coalition. They demanded Jensen's resignation.

"I will return strongly and look forward to starting work in the parliament group," said Jensen.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has yet to comment on Jensen's resignation.

On Facebook, Frederiksen said she regretted the decision to slaughter all minks.

"In the government, we take responsibility for the mistakes that are made. But this must not mean that we in Denmark lose control of the infection," said Frederiksen.