The trial of nine Icelanders accused of having attacked parliament in December 2008 begins today, in Reykjavík District Court.
As has been reported, in December 2008 nine protesters attempted to enter the parliamentary building through the public entrance. All nine ended up arrested and accused of using violence to try and force their way past security. However, video footage of the incident in question contradicts many details of the official version of events.
Numerous public figures, and a few members of parliament – among the Social Democrat Mörður Árnason – have called for charges against the Reykjavík Nine to be dropped. A petition to that effect, which amassed hundreds of signatures, was submitted to parliament last summer. A more recent petition has called upon the Minister of Justice to use his power to drop the charges against the protesters.
The trial has gained international attention as well, with foreign media reporting on the event, but also sympathy protests at Icelandic embassies across Europe ongoing or being planned.
Although many people are calling for the charges to be dropped, last November one of the accused, Sólveig Anna Jónsdóttir, thanked everyone for their support, but said that she would rather be exonerated in court. Should she be convicted, she said, she hopes that people don’t take it quietly.
Sympathy Protests For Reykjavík Nine Across Europe
Attacks On Alþingi Are Of No Concern To Alþingi
Iceland, The Cracker Factory (One of the Reykjavík Nine, Steinunn Gunnlaugsdóttir, and her thoughts on 2010.)
Protests Inside Parliament Over the Reykjavík Nine
Reykjavík Nine Call for Show of Solidarity