Time to drop the defense opt-out
Vote YES! Choose Europe.
When it comes to security policy, we need to think long-term.
In Volt, we believe that Denmark's future is in Europe and therefore we must think European when we make plans for our defense.
We will work to ensure that the EU achieves strategic independence in the field of defense. We want our citizens to be able to influence the direction of our security policy through democratic processes and on 1 June, Danes have the opportunity to choose Europe!
We want to remove the defense opt-out.
When we remove the defense reservation, we take a firm step towards a strong and strategically important Europe. We must be able to confidently assume that our European security is a priority for all Europeans in the future.
European democracies are on insecure ground as long as we can not stand up for our own security. The recent many years of development in the United States have clearly shown that there is more focus on their internal problems and a strong Europe is not in opposition to a strong United States.
Choosing Europe and removing the Defense opt-out strengthens Denmark's influence on how we guarantee Europe's security for the future.
Therefore, we say YES to REMOVE the Defense opt-out
We choose Europe - for now and for the future.
Here we have gathered the frequently asked questions so that YOU can vote YES with certainty!
No, we vote FOR Europe! And we vote for a stronger Denmark in a stronger Europe.
The vote is here and we should take it. Volt has a vision for Europe and we need political parties that dare to talk about a European future. Volt has always wanted to remove our reservations.
That is why this is not about Putin. It is about peacekeeping missions, about economies of scale for our defence industry and about anti-piracy missions.
Denmark has the world's 5th largest merchant fleet and it is SIGNIFICANTLY to Denmark's advantage that we can help protect our interests alongside those who share them, namely our European neighbours. Most of all, it is about having an influence in an area that is vital to Denmark and that is developing rapidly.
Thirty times have our opt-out prevented us from protecting our own interests, as was the case in 2008 when the EU assumed responsibility for the security of the Horn of Africa off the coast of Somalia, albeit without Denmark.
Here is a list (in Danish) of all the times Denmark has been forced to react to our defence opt-out - meaning that we have been prevented from participating in the defence of our own interests.
Although we often see it in the debates, there will NOT be an EU army in the near future - defence reservation or not.
France is often mentioned in this context, but although the French have expressed sympathy for an EU army, France is the last country in Europe that would surrender sovereignty over its own military.
It would take at least 40 years from now to create an EU army, with establishment and implementation in all member states, with everything from a common command structure, doctrine, common supporting defence industry to political institutions that would exercise democratic mandate over this EU army.
All decisions taken will therefore remain at intergovernmental level for many years to come, but defence cooperation will continue in many other areas - including areas where Denmark has a strong interest in having a voice, such as the defence industry. If we retain our reservations, we will have no say in the development of European defence cooperation.
By working together and by working smarter together, we save money and thereby strengthen our overall capabilities - here is an overview from the European Parliament.
All defence cooperation will remain at intergovernmental level.
France is often seen as the initiator of the discussion on the EU army, but defence cooperation is intergovernmental and no country can be forced to participate in anything.
Denmark is one of the most militarily active countries in the world in terms of population and our military expertise is in demand by all our allies. To maintain our high operational level, we need to participate in military operations together with our partners.
That is why Denmark, at the invitation of France and the Malian government, went to the Sahel region to fight Al-Qaeda, Boko Haram and Islamic State, but no one forced Denmark, or the other countries - including Sweden, to help France and Malian government in the Sahel region.
It is about the Danish defence cooperation with the European member states.
Denmark is part of the EU and it is in our long-term interest to help shape what Europe will look like.
That is why Volt recommends a YES to dropping the defence opt-out, because Danes deserve to have a say in what the future of our continent will look like.
Denmark's opportunity to influence Europe is diminishing the more we are left out. We have said YES to the EU, we are part of the European community - why not strengthen all our interests and be at the table where decisions are made? Danish reservations do not stop Europe's rapid development - but they reduce Denmark's influence on it.
NATO is a complement to our defence, but it is not the only defence alliance Denmark should be part of.
We have seen how the internal challenges of the US and the wishes of the electorate have influenced numerous presidents, most recently Donald Trump whose announcements to withdraw the US from NATO altogether sent shockwaves through our security structures, especially those of our fellow Europeans closest to Russia.
We believe that Denmark must take the consequences of these announcements and strengthen the EU so that the European community becomes a stronger actor capable of defending the interests that we have in Europe.
We must not put all our defence eggs in the NATO basket and risk our security being put at risk at every presidential election on the other side of the Atlantic. There is no need for that.
Europe is in the midst of the greatest conflict on the continent since the wars in the former Yugoslavia, and it is an affront then, as now, to European values and to our common history that we as Europeans can do nothing.
As surprised as Europe was by Russia's invasion of Ukraine, it was, unfortunately, just as expected according to American intelligence sources.
So while we now see that both Sweden and Finland are on the fast-track to NATO membership, Russia's persistent threats to our Scandinavian neighbours and the Baltic states, as well as its invasion of, and war crimes in, Ukraine have put the spotlight on the fact that we Europeans should be able to protect ourselves.
Volt Danmark also recognises our responsibility towards our military partners: that we must strengthen our military capabilities to meet our allies' expectations in a mutually reliable and transparent cooperation, which is why we also support raising our defence budget to 2% and keeping it at that level in the future.
There is only the Danish defence, just as we have not created a separate Danish NATO army, even here after more than 70 years in the Alliance.
When we invest in our military and we reach the 2% of GDP in relation to our NATO commitments, then it will also cover our European commitments.
So we should not invest in two different armies for two different organisations - it is the Danish defence that will be enabled to operate both in the EU and in NATO.
At the same time, we must remember that cooperation in European defence remains voluntary: We do not have to participate in EU missions if we don't want to or cannot.
According statements made by the American Embassy, the removal of the defence opt-out will be beneficial for NATO if Denmark sticks to its pro-transatlantic position. Denmark could become an important ally of the US within the European defence cooperation. Denmark could thus strengthen NATO far more than if we were outside the cooperation.
Yes, Denmark's defense industry is missing out on many billions at the EU Defense Fund as we always pays for as this cooperation falls under industrial cooperation and research, because due to the Defence reservation we do NOT have influence on the overall strategy and therefore the money has to be spent. It gives the 26 other countries in the EU a huge head start because they can tailor the Fund's grants to their respective defence industries, where Denmark's defence industry, as the only one, has to adapt afterwards. Our industry deserves better and jobs are at stake.
which Denmark pays in advance, because due to the Defense reservation we do NOT have an influence on how the money is to be spent and the overall strategy..
This means that all the 26 other countries in the EU can shape the way in which OUR money is to be used for the benefit of their defense industry, without Denmark being able to do anything.
Defence cooperation is intergovernmental, not supranational. Jeppe Kofod has also confirmed that if a real EU army is proposed sometime in the future, this must be put to a referendum under Article 20.
So we will not lose anything - but we will gain influence.
After almost 30 years of a defence reservation, Denmark will finally become part of the European conversation about our common defence and security policy.
Not only do we need to train together, we also need to make investments that make sense, together. By removing the opt-out, we will have influence over procurement. We will not be left out of decisions when Europe makes long-term defence investments to cover hundreds of millions of people. That is why we should vote YES to lifting the defence opt-out!
NORDEFCO is dependent on NATO and includes both Norway and Iceland.
At present, we would never be able to achieve real economies of scale by working only with the Nordic countries.
Joint Expeditionary Force works fine but just like the French European Intervention Initiative it is both new and untried.
No, it's an intergovernmental cooperation. This means that we will engage in this on an equal footing with the rest of our European citizens and make it a common project for our common future..
Yes! Europe has worked hard to build a peaceful continent, scarred by the experience of world wars, and for the same reason we have worked hard to build democracy, and now we must also be able to defend ourselves against external threats.
Europe is developing and Denmark is for some reason still standing with hat in hand, not knowing whether to get on board the train or stay on the platform. The train is Europe and it's time to get onboard!