A Grapevine service announcement Be patient: That eruption is expected to last until 2015

EU Fishing Minister Gives Iceland “Last Chance” To End Mackerel Fishing

Published December 19, 2011

The European Union has run out of patience with regards to Iceland’s mackerel fishing, which the organisation says is being conducted unsustainably.
Iceland and the EU have been butting heads over mackerel fishing for at least the past year. The EU has threatened to block mackerel imports from Iceland, and threatened to allow Icelandic ships bearing mackerel from docking in EU ports. Nonetheless, both Iceland and the Faeroe Islands have continued harvesting the fish at levels that the EU says go beyond a sustainable level.
.
It now appears that the EU has had enough, AFP reports.

Iceland and the Faroe Islands face their “last chance” to end a mackerel quota war in negotiations next month, EU fisheries ministers said, otherwise the EU could impose sanctions.
The sanctions Damanaki proposes would be designed to “eliminate” commercial advantages gleaned by these north Atlantic neighbours for “unsustainable” catch levels, and would be based on import restrictions or access to EU ports and facilities.
Scotland’s fisheries minister Richard Lochhead, who leads negotiations for Britain, said “the power to impose meaningful sanctions against states fishing unsustainably would be a progressive step.”

What the nature of these sanctions entail has still not been sorted out, but as banning Icelandic mackerel has failed to yield the outcome the EU desires, the proposed sanctions could extend to other Icelandic exports.
More background on the EU v. Iceland mackerel saga can be read here.



News
<?php the_title(); ?>

Former Prime Minister Regrets 1968 Racist Remarks

by

Former Prime Minister Geir H. Haarde says that regrets and feels ashamed by racist remarks he made in a school paper at the age of 17. Geir’s article, “Maladies in our Society” resurfaced earlier this year. Its final paragraphs consist of explicitly racist remarks, including: “… I want to mention the highly increased blood-mixing of people of color and Icelanders. I think that such mixing is, to say the least, highly undesirable and unhealthy. The results of mistakes made by nitwits in these matters can be horrendous.” And so on. When the paper came under public scrutiny, last January, Geir

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

Blacked Out Street Lights For Better View Of Northern Lights

by

An employee of a travel service recently extinguished all street lighting by Kleppjárnsreykir, in the inlands of Borgarfjörður, by aiming a flashlight at their light-sensor controller. Apparently he did this to give a group of tourists a clearer view of the northern lights at play. According to Skessuhorn, a local news medium, this created great danger for the people who stood on the road to observe the sky, insufficiently visible to drivers, in the dark. Police authorities in Borgarfjörður received a complaint about the incident. The rhapsodic tourist guide told police that he had taken care that the travellers did

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

Icelandic Coast Guard Bought 250 MP5s From Norwegian Army

by

A spokesperson for the Norwegian army has confirmed that the Icelandic Coast Guard bought 250 MP5 submachine guns from them last December, contrary to official contentions that the guns were a gift. RÚV reports that Dag Aamont, a spokesperson for the Norwegian army, has confirmed that the Icelandic Coast Guard signed a deal with the Norwegian army on December 17 of last year to purchase the weapons. According to the agreement, Iceland paid about 11.5 million ISK for the weapons. Dag would not offer more information on the matter, nor would he comment on statements from Icelandic officials that the

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

STEF Issues Injunction Against Telecoms

by

Copyright holders interest group STEF has issued an injunction against many Icelandic telecoms to block access to Deildu.net and The Pirate Bay. MBL reports that The Performing Rights Society of Iceland (STEF) has already filed an injunction against telecoms Voda­fo­ne, Hringdu, Sím­inn, Tal and 365 Media, asking the court to rule in favour of ordering them to block access to torrent sites The Pirate Bay and its Icelandic cousin, Deildu.net (now known as Iceland.pm). The injunction against Síminn fell through on technicalities, and the judge in the Tal case recused themselves as being unfit to hear the trial. While most

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

More Priests Than Medical Clinics In Countryside

by

Outside of Iceland’s capital, priests outnumber medical clinics, and some far-flung corners have no government offices at all. Vísir reports that, according to data from the Icelandic Regional Development Institute, priests are considerably easier to find than medical professionals in many parts of the countryside. While priests are absent from 12 municipalities outside the capital area, medical clinics are absent from 15 of them. Three municipalities – Svalbarðseyri, Stöðvarfjörður and Stokkseyri – have no government branch offices whatsoever. Reykjavík is home to the seat of government, the National Church, and the main offices of nearly all public service departments. Outside

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

Two-Thirds Against Alcohol In Supermarkets

by

Vísir/Fréttablaðið today published a poll indicating that two-thirds of the Icelandic population would rather not see alcohol sold in grocery stores. Recently proposed changes Last month, Independence Party MP Vilhjálmur Árnason was first speaker for a proposal to amend the law on retail in alcohol and tobacco, and other related legislature, which would allow any private enterprise with a retail-permit to sell alcoholic beverages. As it is, the State reserves monopoly in that market, through its liquor stores, and has done so since the end of general prohibition in 1922. Introducing the proposal, Vilhjálmur said that its aim was “to

Show Me More!