The biggest threats facing Denmark in the coming years include Russia, cyberattacks and the Islamic State militant group, also known as ISIS, according to the country’s national risk assessment released Wednesday evening. The report from the Danish Defense Intelligence Service said the Nordic state faces “serious and ever more complicated” threats, the Local reported.
“Russia has shown the ability and will to use military means to achieve its strategic goals,” the report said. “It is unlikely that Russia has the intention of instigating a military confrontation with NATO or Denmark, but over the coming years Russia will continue to be a significant security and political challenge for the West, NATO and Denmark.”
The Danish risk assessment came as central and eastern European states met Wednesday, issuing a joint statement that described Russia’s posturing as “aggressive.” Russia’s annexation of the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine in March 2014 and the ensuing conflict in Eastern Ukraine that has taken the lives of more than 8,000 people has raised concerns about the Kremlin’s intentions across Europe.
Tensions between Denmark and Russia have been high in the past year with Moscow threatening Copenhagen if the country joins NATO’s missile defense shield, Reuters reported.
"If that happens, Danish warships will be targets for Russian nuclear missiles," Russian Ambassador to Denmark Mikhail Vanin said in March. “Denmark will become a part of the threat against Russia. It will be less peaceful, and relations with Russia will be damaged.”
Russian forces took part in an exercise in March that simulated an invasion of Denmark and neighboring states. Additionally, the two countries could face increased tension over territorial claims in the Arctic with the report noting Russia was taking a “more challenging direction” regarding the area.
Officials highlighted the terror threat posed by groups such as ISIS as well as the potential threat that returning Islamic militants may hold. However, the report mentioned the capability of groups like ISIS to carry out attacks in Europe was “limited.”
Cyberattacks and cyberespionage threats remain “very high” against government and businesses with groups employing “more advanced techniques” posing an additional threat to Denmark.