Greenland says ‘yes’ to self-rule

NUUK, November 26, 2008 (AFP) – More than 75 percent of Greenlanders voted Tuesday in favour of self-rule in a referendum that paves the way for independence from Denmark, final results showed.

A total of 75.54 percent voted “yes” to greater autonomy, while 23.57 percent said “no,” the local government said.

A self-rule proposal hammered out with Denmark earlier this year gives Greenland, which was granted semi-autonomy from Copenhagen in 1979, rights to potentially lucrative Arctic resources, as well as control over justice and police affairs and, to a certain extent, foreign affairs.

The local government said 71.96 percent of the island’s 39,000 eligible voters had cast ballots.