From Iceland — Icesave: The Backlash Begins

Icesave: The Backlash Begins

Published February 7, 2011

Ever since it has become fairly likely that the new Icesave agreement between Iceland, Britain and Holland will pass in parliament, opposition to the measure redoubled their efforts.
As has been reported, the conservatives have come out in favour of supporting the Icesave bill, which gives the ruling coalition a wide margin of passage for the deal. This prompted a strong reaction from certain members of the Independence Party, but that reaction is also evident in other areas.
InDefence, the lobbying group who opposed the previous Icesave deal but softened their rhetoric somewhat when the new deal was introduced, have sent out a revised statement to the Icelandic media.
Eyjan reports that the group clarifies, “In the past few days and weeks, members of the media and politicians have contended that InDefence has had a positive outlook on the new Icesave deal. This is wrong.”
They reiterate in the statement that in actuality, they have never changed their position, as their main area of concern – that any Icesave agreement absolve the government of any responsibility – has been unfulfilled.
Calls for a referendum on the new deal are also starting to heat up, with former Minister of Justice Björn Bjarnason advocating such on his blog, and certain members of the Independence Party saying the same.
Conservative chairman Bjarni Benediktsson has been cautious about any talk of referendum, saying that he hasn’t ruled out the possibility, but that the time has come to put an end to the matter, Eyjan reports. He also believes members of his own party will eventually come around in support of passage.
The third and final vote on the bill – after which it gets sent to the president for signing into law – is due shortly.
Icesave Enters Final Round

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