Brown Responds to PM, PM Responds to Brown - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Brown Responds to PM, PM Responds to Brown

Published November 26, 2009

UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown has finally responded to Iceland PM Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir’s letter from last August, prompting another letter in return. As Grapevine reported, Sigurðardóttir sent a letter to Brown regarding Icesave on 28 August, wherein she requested that the two meet, and that British authorities show Iceland understanding in the Icesave matter. Vísir reports that Brown has now responded.
In his letter, he says in part, “I am encouraged by the progress that has been made [with regards to the Icesave deal]. The bill currently being considered by the Althingi will ensure that the loan arrangements will be legally sound. This is an important step for all of us, and I welcome your government’s commitment to ensuring that the guarantee is legally binding.”
In response, Sigurðardóttir penned a letter of her own, saying “it is important that all parties share the same understanding of the context and the basic elements of the agreements.” She emphasizes that Iceland agreed to enter into negotiations, assuming the obligation to pay so long as they did not create an unfair burden on the Icelandic economy, and “irrespective of whether it is legally obliged to do so.” She goes on to say that Icelandic authorities will, at the same time, look into where its obligations lie and, if it turns out that Iceland in fact has no legal obligation to repay UK depositors into Icesave, that “we would certainly expect the other parties to revisit the matter in a spirit of fairness and good faith.”
Both letters in full can be read at the bottom of this page.


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