A Grapevine service announcement Be patient: That eruption is expected to last until 2015
News
Chinese Pump 300 Million into Aurora Research

Chinese Pump 300 Million into Aurora Research

Photos by
Éric Lluent

Published April 4, 2014

The Chinese State is giving 300 million ISK to further Northern Lights research in North Iceland, reports RÚV.

The purpose of the money is to expand the current Aurora Observatory in Reykjadalur, North Iceland. Although construction and the running of the observatory will be conducted by Icelanders, the bill is being footed by the Chinese state and technology provided by the Polar Research Institute of China (PRIOC).

Scientists told RÚV last year, when the Chinese first became involved with Northern Lights observation in Iceland, that monitoring aurora can aid in the prediction of space weather.

The land on which the observatory sits is being leased to PRIOC via the company Arctic Portal fronted by Halldór Jóhannsson. Halldór works on the behalf of many Chinese investors, including businessman Huang Nubo who attempted to buy, then lease land in Iceland in 2012.

Pascal Heyman, former Deputy Director of the OSCE said in a recent interview withAkureyri Vikublað that Icelanders should be wary of what the Chinese want to achieve with the Aurora Observatory.

“The Chinese do not do anything without good reason. That the Chinese want to come here and research the sky above Iceland looks suspicious. We know that they are interested in the Arctic and that they have acquired land all over the world. Icelanders should tread carefully,” said Heyman.

Heyman went on to say that the Chinese could use the technology in the observatory to monitor NATO airspace.

There is however, no proof of foul play.


News
<?php the_title(); ?>

Interior Minister: Call To Resign “Unbelievably Inappropriate”

by

Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir has dismissed a Left-Green proposal that she resign as “unbelievably inappropriate”. Her criticisms that the proposal contains falsehoods, however, appear to contradict the facts. Last weekend, the Left-Green Party held a party convention wherein a number of proposals were bundled into a general platform. Amongst these proposals is that Hanna Birna resign, in part because “the Minister did not speak truthfully to parliament and the Minister directly intervened in the investigation [of her ministry].” Speaking on radio station Bylgjan, Hanna Birna was dismissive of the proposal, telling listeners: “I find [the proposal] unbelievable

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

Management Wrong On Icelanders’ Working Hours

by

A representative of management who contended that Icelanders do not need to work fewer hours has been corrected by the director of the Association for Sustainability and Democracy (ALDA). As reported, Þorsteinn Víglundsson, the director of Business Iceland (SA), recently dismissed a bill that was recently submitted to parliament on the subject of the definition of “full time work”. The bill proposes that the definition be changed from 40 hours per week to 35. Þorsteinn, in an interview with Stöð 2, told reporters that the concerns raised in the bill were unrealistic, saying that Icelanders work on average about 37

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

“Idiot” And Other Words Removed From Icelandic Penal Code

by

The Icelandic Penal Code was recently revamped to remove some of its more out-dated word choices, and replace them with more modern equivalents. RÚV reports that amongst these proposed changes is to remove the word “idiot” and replace it with the phrase “individual with a developmental disorder”. The out-dated “idiot” is currently used in Article 222 of the Icelandic Penal Code, which states, “Anyone who, intentionally or unwittingly, gives dangerous objects or substances to a child younger than 15 years old, a mentally ill person, an idiot or an intoxicated person will be fined or jailed”. Other changes in word

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

ISNIC Cites Business Reasons For Closing Islamic State’s Domain

by

RÚV reports that Isnic closed the domain of militant group ISIS/Islamic State for business reasons, according to Jens Pétur Jensen, ISNIC’s manager. The decision was made following a staff meeting. Jens Pétur says that around half of ISNIC’s ten staff members were opposed to the decision, and would either have preferred the company wait for a legitimate order from State authorities or not close the site down at all. This was heard at a meeting of Alþingi’s Enviroment and Transportation Committee. Jens Pétur told members of Alþingi that the business reasons behind the decision were concerns about the reputation of

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

STEF Demands All ISPs Block Torrent Sites

by

This morning, the collective rights management society STEF, demanded responses from ISPs Síminn, Tal and 365, as to whether the companies will block their users’ access to the sharing sites Piratebay and its now non-existing local counterpart, deildu.net. This was reported by RÚV. STEF has demanded a response before Wednesday, threatening legal action. As reported, earlier this month, the Reykjavík District court ruled in favor of STEF’s demands in the case of two other ISPs, which were ordered to block their customers’ access to the torrent sites. Within a day after the ruling, which specifies the URLs to be blocked,

News
<?php the_title(); ?>

Board Rules Police Must Disclose Protest Report

by

Police must disclose a report on its organization during political demonstrations from 2008 to 2011, according to a ruling by the Information access complaint board. The report’s title is, aptly: “Summary of police organization at protests from 2008 to 2011″. Activist and author Eva Hauksdóttir has sought access to the report since 2012. She first applied to the Chief of Police, who refused the request. She then filed a complaint to the Information access complaint board, established through the 2012 Information act. The board ordered the Chief of Police to reconsider the request. He did and declined the request again,

Show Me More!