Iceland’s police force are once again asking to get tasers, as they have done for at least the past five years now.
RÚV reports that The National Police Federation of Iceland (LL) have twice recently sent requests to be armed with tasers. Snorri Magnússon, the chairperson of LL, argued that tasers could reduce injuries to police officers, adding that the newest brands of tasers are equipped with cameras and microphones that turn on the moment the taser is activated, which he says would reduce the chances that they would be misused.
This is not the first time the police have wanted tasers. The first reported event was in 2010, when police made similar arguments that tasers are non-lethal and prevent the use of deadly force.
Left-Green MP Ögmundur Jónasson, who was the Minister of the Interior at the time, denied the request on the grounds that tasers “produce a current of 50,000 volts and cause great pain, besides it being known that such a device damages the muscles and nervous system.” He added that he came to the conclusion that “there is no reason for tasers to be put to use.”
Undeterred, the police made another request in 2012, also to Ögmundur, and were again denied.
The Ministry of the Interior has the final say on the matter of police armament. The current minister, Ólöf Nordal, has yet to comment on the matter.