Rainbow Square unveiled in Copenhagen

gay flagOn the back of three failed attempts to give an unused car park in Copenhagen an LGBT-themed name, the City Council has finally agreed to name it Regnbuepladsen (Rainbow Square).

Morten Kabell, Copenhagen’s deputy mayor for technical and environmental affairs, said he is pleased they have reached a broad political agreement to support the liberal spirit of the city and its fight for equal rights for the LGBT community.

The original plan for the former car park was to name it Axel Axgil, after the founder of the Scandinavian country’s first gay rights organisation – now called LGBT Denmark. Axgil was the first person in the country to enter a civil partnership in 1989. He died, aged 96, in 2011.

However, the original name was later dropped after claims he had connections with Nazi groups and had faced allegations of pedophilia. The council then proposed lesbian actress Hannah Bjarnhof, but the country’s LGBT argued that she wasn’t a significant enough cultural figure.

Regnbuepladsen was later suggested, but some City Council members opposed the idea, claiming the square didn’t need a name. However, on Thursday, a majority vote finally decided the square could have a gay-themed name.

Kabell pointed out that the naming of the square will send a message to the rest of the world that Copenhagen backs gay rights. He noted that in many countries, citing Russia and Uganda, the LGBT community are discriminated against, which he referred to as “completely crazy”, adding that the Rainbow Square name lets the world know Copenhagen’s stance on the issue.