Danish Prime Minister calls elections seven months early amid fallout from devastating mink cull policy

The Danish government culled the country’s 15 million captive mink during the pandemic over mutation fears

Denmark will hold a general election on November 1, seven months before the scheduled end of Mette Frederikson’s term as Prime Minister. Frederikson called the election on October 6 after facing mounting criticism for a controversial mink cull policy.

Frederikson is under fire for a Covid-19 policy which saw the government order a cull of the country’s entire captive mink population over fears of Covid-19 mutation which could have rendered vaccines ineffective. The policy has harmed Denmark’s previously world-leading furs industry.

A commission found although the cull was illegal, Frederikson did not mean to break the law.

The election was triggered when opposition party, the Social Liberal party issued an ultimatum demanding elections. Frederikson, who previously became Denmark’s youngest Prime Minister, aged 41, responded by calling elections for November, avoiding an increasingly likely vote of no confidence.

Current polls do not predict a clear election result. Pollsters anticipate a tie between Frederikson’s left-leaning Social Democrats and a right-wing bloc made up of Liberal, Conservative and nationalist parties. Denmark is also currently embroiled in global political crisis over alleged sabotage of a gas pipeline from Russia.