Denmark: Voters back joining EU defense, projections say
Copenhagen, Jun 02: Denmark took to the polls on Wenesday to vote on whether or not to join the EU's common defense policy. Projections by domestic broadcasters showed that roughly two thirds of Danish voters supported the measure.
First official results were expected within a few hours of polls closing, but the projections' margins strongly suggested the final result was in no doubt.
Danish broadcaster TV2 reported that 66.6% voted in favor of ending Denmark's opt-out from EU defense policy, with 33.4% against.
It comes as the European nation is seeking closer defense ties with its allies in the wake of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
When it goes into effect, Danish officials will be able to remain in the room when EU colleagues discuss defense topics. It also means Danish forces can take part in EU military operations.
Why did Denmark call the referendum?
Social Democrat Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said when calling the referendum that a "Yes" vote would "strengthen our security."
It followed dramatic changes in the security environment in Nordic countries in particular in the wake of Russia's attack on Ukraine, as long-neutral Finland and Sweden sought to join the NATO military alliance.
Denmark is already a member of the trans-Atlantic alliance but had remained outside the EU's moves toward formulating a common defense policy.