More Seyðisfjörður Returns, Man Arrested For "Threatening" Prime Minister Comes Forward

More Seyðisfjörður Returns, Man Arrested For “Threatening” Prime Minister Comes Forward

Published December 23, 2020

Photo by
John Rogers

Anywhere from 80 to 100 people will be allowed to return to Seyðisfjörður, RÚV reports, as an additional small area of the village has been cleared of danger of further landslides.

This news comes on the heels of some 305 people being allowed to return, only days after landslides destroyed 14 homes in the northeast Iceland town.

A great portion of the town, however, will remain closed to residents until at least December 27th, when the situation will be reviewed again. This means that the 190 people who live in that area will have to spend their holidays elsewhere.

In related news, it does not appear as though the Prime Minister was threatened during her visit to Seyðisfjörður yesterday. While it was reported by police that this was the case, the suspect in question spoke to Fréttablaðið about the matter.

Jon­a­t­han Moto Bisagni, who operates the Austur­lands Food Coop in Seyðisfjörður, by all accounts contacted several MPs and First Lady Eliza Reid about the situation in Seyðisfjörður. His intent was to express his frustration at what he believes was neglect on the part of the government which led to last Friday’s disaster, rather than weather conditions alone. He denies threatening anyone, let alone the Prime Minister, and the communications from him that have been shared with the press also do not show any threats being given.

He pointed out that the dangers of landslides had been brought up several times in town council meetings, and therefore something could have been done to prevent this disaster if the town residents had been listened to. There may be something to this, as a report from the Icelandic Met Office cites Harpa Grímsdóttir, an expert on flooding and landslides, saying that the danger in the area had been underestimated.

For his part, Jonathan says he has nothing against the Prime Minister. That said, he believes “the government played Russian roulette with our lives and blamed the weather for it.”

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