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Danish PM casts doubt on reaching Europol deal with EU

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen speaks during a press meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark August 30, 2016. Scanpix Denmark/Olafur Steinar Gestsson via REUTERS/File Photo

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen on Thursday cast doubt on whether his country will reach a deal with the EU Commission that will enable it to keep cooperating with Europol, the European police agency.

European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermanns this week told the country’s leaders they would not get the cross-border policing deal they have been seeking, following Denmark’s referendum vote last December to quit Europol.

Since the referendum, the government has been seeking a “parallel deal” that would still allow it to maintain some cooperation with the police agency.

Without such a deal, Denmark may have to hold a second referendum on whether to go back to full participation in Europol, Rasmussen said on Thursday.

“Its still very doubtful whether we can succeed in finding a solution with the EU Commission,” he said.

“It is difficult to keep the Danish police within Europol, but I have not given up all hope,” he added.

Reporting by Erik Matzen; Editing by Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen and Hugh Lawson