WATCH: Denmark Foreign Ministers Won’t Shake Hands With Mike Pompeo

The United States is still struggling with the COVID-19 pandemic, while some other nations are beginning to get outbreaks under control. While tourists are barred from the European Union, Mike Pompeo traveled to Denmark for meetings in Copenhagen Wednesday. However, the Foreign Ministers still wouldn’t shake hands.

Mike Pompeo rebuffed for handshake
[Photo by Ole Jensen/Getty Images]

Pompeo was to meet with officials representing Denmark, Greenland, and the Faroe Islands for discussions regarding shared arctic security goals. Still, Denmark is currently seeing a sharp drop in COVID-19 cases, while in the U.S. new cases are still on the rise, per Our World In Data.

Hence, when Mike Pompeo approached these officials — the Danish Foreign Minister, the Forese Foreign Minister, and the Greenlandic Foreign Minister — for a formal handshake, he was gently rebuffed in favor of shoulder pats and an elbow bump, according to Washington Post reporter John Hudson.

To all appearances the greeting were still friendly and open — but shaking hands was clearly off the table as everyone attempts to prevent new outbreaks.

As for the difference between how the pandemic is going in Denmark vs the U.S., Raw Story points out that Denmark has been averaging 1 COVID-19 death per day over the past week, compared to 800 per day in the United States. Even adjusted for the population difference (The U.S. has 58 times Denmark’s population according to NationMaster), the U.S. is seeing a significantly higher death rate.

As the National Geographic reported last month, tourism in the European Union is currently off-limits to travelers from the U.S.A., due to the ongoing pandemic.

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