Protesters taking part in the global Occupy movement in Reykjavík say they have permits to erect tents and camp in front of parliament. As reported, last weekend Occupy Reykjavík kicked into full swing, but was soon disrupted by police when they took down a large tent that several protesters had been sleeping in. They have since claimed that the police have purposefully damaged the tent by slicing it with a knife. Undaunted, the protesters returned, setting up four smaller tents in front of parliament. They also claim they have obtained the necessary permit to camp on the site. Assistant to the mayor Björn Blöndal had advised the protesters that if they wanted to occupy the space in front of parliament, then they should apply for a permit to do so from city environmental officials. It now looks like they have obtained such a permit, but chief of police Geir Jón Þórisson said they are still looking into the matter. If it turns out they do not have such a permit, he said, their tents will be removed immediately.
Vísir reports that the heirs of a man who died 27 years ago —his grandchildren, more precisely— are now being charged, for a student loan that the man’s stepson took, and for which the now deceased man then signed as guarantor. The Ghost of Systems Past In recent years, some changes have been made to the Icelandic student loan system. Most notably, in 2009, the left-left Alþingi majority abolished the requirement of a third party guarantor. Until then, the requirement meant that a prospectful student needed the signature of someone with a clean financial record, who thereby assumed responsibility in
Several members of parliament have table a motion to introduce subtitles on all visual media content, reports Vísir. Currently it is only compulsory to subtitle foreign language content in Iceland but the MP’s believe that all content, including Icelandic news, films and television programmes should be subtitled as well. The motion has been put together by MP’s from 3 different parties and aims to enhance media services for the deaf and hard of hearing. Additionally, the motion argues the subtitles would help foreigners and new residents learn Icelandic. This is the second time this motion has been put to Iceland’s
Malaysian Airlines have slammed a satirical article claiming that one of their flights was forced to make an emergency landing after flying over the Holuhraun eruption, reports RÚV. On Monday, satirical news site, World News Daily Report, published a fake article claiming that Malaysia Airlines flight MH131 was forced to make an emergency landing in Iceland after the plane’s navigation systems were damaged by heat and debris from the eruption. The article added that the pilots of the Boeing 777 aircraft were instructed to fly almost directly over the volcano despite warnings from the International Civil Aviation Organisation. Malaysia Airlines,
The Confederation of Icelandic Labour Unions (ASÍ) has released a statement saying there is “no foundation for further discussion” with the government if their new budget bill passes. The statement, posted on ASÍ’s website, calls the new budget bill “an attack on working people”, saying that the Central Committee of the labour union was “deeply disappointed” with the proposals in the budget. “[The Central Committee] believes there is no basis for continued cooperation with the government if the budget bill becomes law,” the statement reads in part. ASÍ’s criticisms are numerous. They are particularly dissatisfied of the proposed raising of
While there has been considerable reporting on the effects of SO2 on humans, animals are even more at risk. RÚV reports that farmers in the Icelandic countryside are worried about what effects the gas will have on their sheep, many of whom have not yet been herded. While a great many animals in the east and the north – where the pollution has been greatest – have been rounded up, their still remain a great many behind, grazing in the mountains. Some farmers have reported that even the rounding-up itself is made more difficult by the pollution, as horses get
Police are already starting to crack down on black market rentals of houses and apartments for tourists. MBL reports that the Reykjavík Area Police, in conjunction with the Directorate of Internal Revenue, have closed four establishments illegally renting out accommodation to tourists. These properties, identified as “homes and apartments”, had no permit to rent out the rooms for this purpose. Authorities combed over advertisements in newspapers, social media, and sites such as AirBnB through August and September, comparing the properties advertised and seeing whether or not they had the legal right to offer guest accommodation. In addition, tax records were