Iceland PM may face vote of no confidence

Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, Prime Minister of Iceland.

Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, Prime Minister of Iceland. Photo: mbl.is/Eggert

Reports suggest that opposition parties in Iceland are discussing mounting a vote of no confidence against the Prime Minister, following revelations that one of the companies claiming millions from Iceland’s crashed banks is owned his wife.

The wife of PM Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson has recently been discovered to be the owner of British Virgin Island-based Wintris Inc. The company lost money as a result the financial crash and is claiming a total of ISK 515 million (approx. €3.7 million) from the three failed banks: Glitnir, Kaupþing and Landsbanki.

British Virgin Islands is a well-known tax haven.

British Virgin Islands is a well-known tax haven. Photo: Wikipedia/Henry aw

The revelation has caused anger among Iceland’s political class and members of the public. Many see Gunnlaugsson’s position as head of the government overseeing the winding-up of the three banks and his close personal relationship with one of the major claimants as an unacceptable conflict of interest.

According to national broadcaster RÚV (link in Icelandic), all opposition parties have discussed mounting a vote of no confidence against the PM, but no formal joint talks among them have taken place.

Opposition MPs are deeply unhappy about the the alleged conflict ...

Opposition MPs are deeply unhappy about the the alleged conflict of interest. Photo: mbl.is/Golli

Prime Minister Gunnlaugsson has been asked to appear in parliament to address various unanswered questions regarding the affair.

Helgi Hrafn Gunnarsson, MP for the Pirate Party, is quoted as saying that this “huge” affair is not to do with the PM’s wife, but with the PM himself and his interests.

“For Sigmundur Davíð to remain as Prime Minister in the light of these revelations is unthinkable,” he categorically states.

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Helgi Hrafn Gunnarsson MP.

Helgi Hrafn Gunnarsson MP. Photo: mbl.is/Styrmir Kári

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