MP Says Jewelry Store Robbery Shows Iceland Should Leave Schengen - The Reykjavik Grapevine

MP Says Jewelry Store Robbery Shows Iceland Should Leave Schengen

Published March 20, 2012

An MP for the Progressive Party told parliament this morning that an attempted smash-and-grab jewelry store robbery showed that Iceland should leave the Schengen Region, adding that eastern European nations posed a threat to the country.
Vigdís Hauksdóttir, and MP for the Progressive Party asked Minister of the Interior Ögmundur Jónasson if Iceland should withdraw from the Schengen Area – of which Iceland has been a member since 2001 – and establish its own border and customs policy.
Ögmundur responded by saying that while his party, the Leftist-Greens, opposed Iceland joining Schengen at the time, it has clearly paid off for the country in many ways. He added that matters regarding passport control have less to do with Schengen than they do the European Economic Area (EEA) agreement.
Vigdís responded that the interests of the nation should be put first, saying that Schengen has had a negative impact on employment in Iceland. Rather than cite data to back this up, she then said, “We heard about the robbery that happened at the same jewelry store that was robbed a month ago, and there certain parties come into the picture.”
While no suspects’ national identities have been revealed, Vigds continued, “Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia, the Czech Republic, the list is long. The Schengen agreement that Iceland entered into in 2001 is a whole other Schengen agreement now with these countries involved. Are we going to do something about this problem now, or are we going to set up yet another committee to make a decision?”

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