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United States Intervention at the 11th Session of UPR Working Group – Denmark
May 4, 2011

The United States warmly welcomes His Excellency Mr. Klaus Grube and the entire Danish delegation to the UPR Working Group. We congratulate Denmark on the completion of its National Report, and we are particularly pleased to have the opportunity to hear directly from representatives of Greenland and the Faroe Islands as members of the Danish delegation. We have carefully reviewed the report and followed today’s presentation, and would like to make the following observations and recommendations.

The United States commends Denmark for its long-standing commitment to upholding human rights and for increased recent efforts to place human rights at the forefront of its national agenda, including the establishment of independent institutes like the Danish Institute for Human Rights.

Though Denmark is demonstrating great resolve in addressing human rights issues, we share concerns raised over religious and ethnic discrimination, domestic violence against women, residency and citizenship requirements for migrants and asylum seekers, and human trafficking. We appreciate the further information the State Secretary has provided today regarding these issues.

Bearing in mind these concerns, we offer the following two recommendations:

1. That Denmark review the requirements for migrants and asylum seekers to obtain permanent residence and citizenship and consider removal of retroactive elements of these requirements.

2. That Denmark strengthen its protection of trafficking victims, specifically by offering longer-term alternatives that would allow them to stay in country via a work or residency permit rather than solely offering repatriation or asylum.