News
Iceland Supported Torture Squads

Iceland Supported Torture Squads

Published February 7, 2014

The Icelandic government gave funding to a commando squad in Iraq that later turned out to be practicing torture. The Minister of Foreign Affairs does not believe the matter needs to be investigated further.
DV reports that, from 2005 to 2006, the Independence Party/Progressive coalition at the time gave about 300,000 euros in funding to NATO Training Mission – Iraq (NTM-I). Amongst the groups who worked under NTM-I was the Special Police Commandos, a paramilitary police force in Iraq which was later revealed to have actively practiced torture.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson, in response to a written question from the Pirate Party on the matter, said that the official NATO position has been that they do not support torture. He added that NATO “does not comment on unconfirmed documents that have been leaked” via Wikileaks, which was how the story broke in the first place.
In an investigation conducted by both the Guardian and the BBC, however, it was revealed that these commandos “conducted some of the worst acts of torture during the US occupation and accelerated the country’s descent into full-scale civil war.”



News
Head To Toe Arsenal Gear, Except At Funerals

Head To Toe Arsenal Gear, Except At Funerals

by

Hardcore Icelandic Arsenal fan, Sigfríð Ingólfsdóttir, only ever wears Arsenal gear or Arsenal themed clothing, reports Vikudagur, except when she has to attend funerals. Sigfríð, 62, began following English football 30 years ago and first started supporting Arsenal after thinking the name of the team was pretty neat. She has since become one of Arsenal’s most dedicated fans in Iceland, has an “Arsenal Room” in her home, and is regularly stopped to discuss games. “I get stopped out on the street, people like to talk to me about Arsenal and football in general,” said Sigfríð. “Some of them are on

News
A Farewell To Arms

A Farewell To Arms

by

The MP5 submachine guns Iceland received from Norway will be sent back, the Icelandic Coast Guard has announced. According to the announcement, posted today on the Coast Guard’s website, the conclusion of talks with the Norwegian army yesterday and today led to the decision to return the guns, which have been held by toll authorities over the past few weeks. Customs officials held onto the guns on account of a dispute over whether the guns were a gift or a purchase. The Icelandic Coast Guard contends that “almost all the weapons in possession of the Icelandic Coast Guard (90%) have

News
Minister Of The Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir To Resign

Minister Of The Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir To Resign

by

Minister of the Interior, Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir, is expected to announce that she is stepping down today and will not return to parliament until the New Year, according to RÚV. Hanna Birna has been under a lot of scrutiny following the leak of incriminating and falsified information about Nigerion asylum seeker Tony Omos. She has maintained her innocence throughout the affair, even after her aide Gísli Freyr Valdórsson admitted to the leak. Despite the Independence party and PM Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson declaring their support of her, a lot of pressure has been on her to resign, including from the 1,000 people that

News
Pressan Acquires Newspaper DV

Pressan Acquires Newspaper DV

by

Vefpressan, the publishing company behind such websites as Pressan.is, Eyjan.is and Bleikt.is, has acquired 70% of newspaper DV’s stocks. This was announced this Friday morning. Björn Ingi Hrafnsson, once a member of Reykjavík city council on behalf of the Progressive Party, has been titled as DV’s publisher. This comes following turbulence among the owners and board of DV, which saw former editor Reynir Traustason discharged. Hallgrímur Thorsteinsson was hired as editor in his place. Björn Ingi has not revealed his intentions or plans regarding the purchase. Vefpressan’s news release merely explains that the publishing of DV has now been “secured”

News
Increased Use Of Antidepressants

Increased Use Of Antidepressants

by

Anxiety and antidepressants are prescribed 70% more often in Iceland than 10 years ago and Icelanders consume more antidepressants than any other OECD nation, reports RÚV. According to the Directorate of Health, in 2013 39,000 people were prescribed antidepressants and 34,000 people were prescribed sleeping aids at least once. The most commonly used sleeping pill in Iceland is Zopiclone. The Directorate of Health wrote that Zopiclone should not be used for longer than 2-4 weeks but that many Icelanders are getting prescriptions that last much longer than that, in some cases, even years.

News
Feminists Want Statue Of Bríet

Feminists Want Statue Of Bríet

by

The Icelandic Women’s Rights Association (IWRA) has sent the City of Reykjavík a letter suggesting they erect a statue of suffragette Bríet Bjarnhéðinsdóttir, reports RÚV. Bríet, along with other women’s rights activists founded the IWRA in 1907 and ran the association for 20 years. She is considered the catalyst of the women’s rights movement in Iceland. The IRWA suggested in their letter to City Hall that a statue in a prominent place in Reykjavík would be a great homage to Bríet’s memory and fitting as next year marks 100 years since women gained the right to vote in Iceland. To

Show Me More!