City Council Person: I Should Have Googled Better - The Reykjavik Grapevine

City Council Person: I Should Have Googled Better

Published March 31, 2015

Nanna Árnadóttir
Photo by
althingi.is

The Progressive Party City Council Person, Sveinbjörg Birna Sveinbjörnsdóttir, admitted on Kastljós last night that appointing PEGIDA Supporter, Gústaf Níelsson, as vice-member of the Reykjavík Human Rights Council had been a mistake.

The appointment was later withdrawn but even so Sveinbjörg said she “should have googled better.”

“I should have examined things more carefully and looked at what [Gústaf] had been writing,” said Sveinbjörg who insisted she had not known about Gústaf’s opinions on muslims and gay people prior to the appointment. “Still I don’t think that he was doling out judgement [in his opinion pieces in Morgunblaðið] but just asking questions. Still it was poorly thought through and sometimes politicians don’t think things through.”

Last year Sveinbjörg herself “just asked questions” about whether Icelanders wanted to have to deal with forced marriages and in the run up to the mayoral election said she planned to revoke a plot of land for the building of Iceland’s first mosque.

Sveinbjörg eventually withdrew her statements on blocking the mosque build but reiterated in her interview last night that it was her personal opinion that a mosque should not be built.

Sveinbjörg said that as there were already two houses with dedicated muslim prayer rooms for sermons and ceremonies in Iceland, the obligation for freedom of religion was fulfilled and there was no need to assign a plot of land for a mosque to be built.

“I have nothing against muslims,” said Sveinbjörg. “I am against the fact that the rights of gay people and the rights of women are undercut or non-existent among certain groups of muslims.”

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