The highly disputed machine guns, recently acquired from Norway, only to be returned, will be replaced with weaponry from elsewhere, says the National Comissioner of the Icelandic Police (NCIP). This was reported today, Wednesday.
In a response to inquiries made by RÚV, NCIP said that estimates made within the police, have shown that their need for weapons has increased in recent years. New weapons will be acquired, this time with the direct involvement of the Ministry of the Interior.
The MP5 machine guns from Norway are to be returned because of disputes between the two countries as two whether they were received as a gift or purchased by the Icelandic Coast Guard. Whereas Icelandic police authorities have contended that the guns were given to them, and any invoices were a matter of ceremony or etiquette, Norway has insisted that the invoices are meant as such, and that they expect payment. The Police had not been authorized to make such a purchase, and so the shipment will be returned.
Chief superintendent Jón Bjartmarz responded to RÚV’s inquiries, on behalf of NCIP. He claims that the Civil Protection unit, the National Security unit and the Special Forces have all analysed the risks involved in police forces’ current abilities to deal with incidents involving weapons. In all of those cases, he says, the capabilities have been deemed insufficient and “unjustifiable”.
Jón also cited a poll conducted within the police in 2012, which revealed that 70% of officers considered their weapons training to be unsatisfactory and 83.5% wanted police cars to be “equipped with weapons”, presumably guns.
Meanwhile, the Icelandic Police’ Instagram account, remains active, humorously portraying officers in relation to children, pets, natural phenomena and ice-cream.