From Iceland — Leftist-Greens Will Stay Together, Support Government

Leftist-Greens Will Stay Together, Support Government

Published October 8, 2009

The conclusion of a long meeting of the Leftist-Green Party, which shares the ruling coalition with the Social Democrats, was for the party to hold together as one party and support the government, despite disagreements within the party on how to handle the Icesave situation.
Leftist-Green MP Ögmundur Jónasson, who resigned from his position as Minister of Health over said disagreements, told Vísir at the meeting’s conclusion that the discussion therein had been positive. Party chairman and Finance Minister Steingrímur J. Sigfússion, when asked by RÚV evening news whether there was a gap between him on one side and Jónasson and Leftist-Green MP Guðfríður Lilja Grétarsdóttir on the other, stated simply, “No, we are friends.”
The roots of the conflict within the party over how to handle Icesave reached a crisis point after Jónasson’s resignation as Health Minister last week, and after Gréttarsdóttir declined the offer to take his position. Many within the Leftist-Greens have been unhappy with the Social Democrats’ Icesave plan – to hold a unified front against parliament’s opposition parties and roll the resolution through – and have called instead for further discussion, to reach a more multi-partisan solution. While some pundits had contended that the party may split, Leftist-Green MPs have consistently maintained that the party would stay together and that the coalition would hold.

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