International Round-Up: Danish artist launches lawsuit to protect statue

Every student at Hong Kong University knows ‘The Pillar of Shame’, the Danish artist Jens Galschiøt’s impressive eight meter high, two ton orange sculpture of bodies deformed by pain and despair.

And now Galschiøt – who sculpted it in 1997 in memory of the victims of the June 4, 1989 massacre, when the Chinese army suppressed pro-democracy student demonstrations in a massacre at Beijing’s Tiananmen Square – has reacted angrily to plans to move it from its space. current home outside the university.

According to Galschiøt, it can easily be damaged if it is moved, and he has applied for legal protection for the estimated construction of 1.4 million US dollars, in order to obtain immunity so that the statue can be safely returned to Denmark.

The leverage of legislation
The sculptor lent the work to the Hong Kong Alliance for the Support of Democratic Patriotic Movements, which guarantees its presence on the university campus.

However, following the implementation of the National Security Act on 1 July 2020, which allows for authoritarian intervention on the vague grounds of “a threat to national security” to silence dissidents, several members of the alliance were arrested when they were considered opponents of the nation.

Therefore, last month, the university demanded that the monument be removed.

“There is a legal basis for arresting foreign nationals engaging in activities that are critical of China. Therefore, I want a guarantee that I and my employees will not be prosecuted, “Galschiøt wrote in an open letter on Friday, which was reported by Reuters.

When NGOs and young talents join the fight
Amnesty International Denmark condemned HKU’s decision by saying that it shows “how fear and self-censorship have spread in the wake of the civil rights intervention in Hong Kong”.

A collective of Hong Kong artists called Lady Liberty is currently working on a 3D modeling of the work to ensure its preservation.


Denmark and the international community are participating in Ethiopian conflicts
Denmark and 15 other countries, together with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), have issued a joint statement on the situation in Ethiopia. The declaration condemns human rights violations committed during the conflicts in the Tigray region of Ethiopia between November 2020 and June 2021. The declaration refers to attacks on civilians, killings, torture, arbitrary detentions, abductions, sexual violence and war crimes – all of which have led to a climate of terror.

100 million kroner to developing countries that fight climate change
Around DKK 100 million in climate aid has been earmarked for the least developed countries. The majority of the recipients are in Africa. Space has been found in the Finance Bill for the next budget and the funds were announced at COP26 in Glasgow. About 60 percent of the sum goes to the ecological change from 2023. The announcement is in line with the Sharing the World program and sends, according to Minister of the Environment Flemming Møller Mortensen, a clear signal to the poorest developing countries that Denmark is aware that climate change hits them hardest. .

Foreign Minister welcomes trade delegation trip to Germany
Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod is convinced that the recently concluded trade delegation trip to Germany, where representatives from 52 Danish companies were joined by Queen Margrethe and Crown Prince Frederik, will mark a new chapter in trade relations. After a visit to a coal-fired power plant in transition to wind power, Kofod said: “Germany is on the threshold of a new era with the appointment of a new government. This state visit marks a new chapter in German-Danish relations. ”

IKEA audit reveals that Swedish giant has probably been tricked by a supplier
According to the Danish Environmental Protection Agency, an internal audit of IKEA has revealed that the certification documents for 3,300 wood products in several Danish stores have been forged – possibly due to a supplier who has cheated with the origin of the materials, which are imported from Germany. and Sweden. Apparently the tree in question originated from Siberian forests. The future of the products, whether they are marketed or incinerated, is not yet known, as it is not yet possible to determine whether the FSC standard – which indicates that the product is manufactured in such a way that the amount of felled wood does not exceed the reproductive capacity of the forest – is met.

The government sees a doubling of water technology revenues by 2030
Simon Kollerup, the economic and business affairs, Lea Wermelin, den Minister of the Environment and Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod launches a new export strategy in the field of water technology, as the demand for solutions is great. The goal will be to double the value of water technology exports to DKK 40 billion by 2030. Danish companies are among the world’s best in the field. The work that Danish logistics and science performs helps countries that are struggling with natural disasters and polluted water. “It is crucial that Danish expertise crosses the border and that we create more green jobs here at home,” explains Kollerup.

Source: The Nordic Page





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