"We Are All Helga Björk" - The Reykjavik Grapevine

“We Are All Helga Björk”

Published August 18, 2010

Protesters descended upon the Prime Minister’s office yesterday, telling reporters, “We are all Helga Björk”, referring to the woman who was arrested at the same location last week for no other reason than “disturbing people at work” – an event that was caught on video and uploaded to YouTube.
The Prime Minister’s assistant, Hrannar Björn Arnarson, was accused by an anonymous column in Morgunblaðið of having called the police on the woman, but Hrannar denied the accusation, saying, “I never asked for the arrest of Helga or called anyone. The only thing I did (which I should not have done in light of what has transpired) was to stand beside a policeman who works in the office and watch Helga tossing pieces of bread onto the lawn and the Prime Minister’s car, and ask whether it wouldn’t be possible to prevent such sloppiness.”
The protesters who descended upon the PM’s office yesterday, according to Vísir, came to express not only their disapproval at what they see as unnecessary cuts to the social system, but also to protest Helga Björk’s treatment. This they did by tossing bread onto the lawn and roof of the building – both for the visual effect and to attract seagulls – playing flutes, banging on pots and pans, and leaving their grievances at the door of the Prime Minister’s office.
When asked by reporters for their names, one protester responded, “We are all Helga Björk”. Many of those present, both male and female, identified themselves as such.


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