Opposition is growing in Denmark to plans by the ruling rightwing coalition to deny citizenship to any immigrant who declines to shake hands with their local mayor during a revamped naturalisation ceremony – a measure widely seen as targeting Muslims.
An opinion poll published on Thursday showed 52% of respondents opposed the proposal, part of tough new rules for obtaining Danish citizenship introduced by the minority conservative government in June. Several mayors have said they will ignore the requirement if the law is passed.
"It's absurd that the immigration minister thinks this is an important thing to spend time on," said Kasper Ejsing Olesen, the mayor of the central town of Kerteminde. "Shaking hands does not show if you are integrated or not. I think I will probably find an excuse and the deputy mayor will come to work that day."