Denmark’s Ministry of Immigration, Integration and Housing began an advertising campaign aim to deterring refugees from arriving in the country. Adverts appeared in Arabic and English language newspapers in Lebanon as The Danish government has published advertisements in four Lebanese newspapers Monday that discourage refugees from travelling to Denmark.
Spelling it out: An anti-migrant advert by the Danish government is seen (bottom left) in the Lebanese Alssafir newspaper warning that benefits for newly arrived refugees are being cut by 50 per cent
On Monday, the first adverts from the Danish government were published in four Lebanese newspapers. An English-language version, published in Lebanon’s The Daily Star, informs readers that “Denmark has decided to tighten the regulations concerning refugees in a number of areas.”
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— Justin Cremer (@MrJustinCremer) September 7, 2015
The government’s campaign has been published in ten different languages on DIS’s website and according to Jyllands-Posten, flyers in all ten languages have also been posted in asylum centres across Denmark. The Arabic text is also reportedly being circulated widely through social media.
— Hans Redder (@hansersej) September 7, 2015
“This must be the worst timing for an advert in the history of the world,” Uffe Elbaek, leader of Denmark’s leftwing Alternative party, said in a statement.
Critics of the campaign even took initiative via a Facebook group, raising money to buy their own advertisement welcoming refugees. The ad, which ran in The Guardian, said in large print: “Dear refugees, we welcome you to Denmark.”
“We’re not all like minister Støjberg and the rest of the Danish government,” it continues in smaller print below. “Many of us are bidding refugees a warm welcome. And many of us want to help those who are fleeing torture, bombs and persecution.”
The controversial Danish “information campaign” will continue to run in foreign newspapers and is intended to deter potential refugees from Syria and Northern Africa.