From Iceland — Government Divided Over Capital Airport

Government Divided Over Capital Airport

Published November 20, 2013

While the Minister of the Interior insists that part of the Reykjavík Domestic Airport is closing, the Prime Minister says it is staying where it is.
Vísir reports that Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir is convinced that the smallest of the airport’s three runways will be closed by mid-2014 at the latest. This decision was made within Reykjavík City Hall earlier this year.
However, Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson is against the closing, saying that the question of the runway should find its way into parliament rather than be solely a city issue.
“Of course I believe [the issue] should be introduced to parliament,” he said. “But this reminds us that it is possible to stop this, to unravel this.”
The domestic airport has been a divisive issue in Reykjavík for some time now. Those who want the airport moved out of the capital cite would like to see the land it rests on put to different use, while supporters of keeping the airport in Reykjavík believe it serves an important connection point between the capital and people living in the countryside.
An opinion poll taken last September showed that just under 72% of Reykjavík residents want the domestic airport to remain in the city, although support varied considerably depending on party affiliation.

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