Thousands demand PM resign over Panama Papers

Protestor swarmed into central Reykjavik today.

Protestor swarmed into central Reykjavik today. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Kristján

Irate voters pelted the walls of the Icelandic Parliament with eggs and bananas, while inside fuming opposition MPs took the floor one after another to demand the resignation of the Prime Minister.

'You're fired' says one demonstrator to the PM.

'You're fired' says one demonstrator to the PM. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Golli

This was the situation in the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik this afternoon – 24 hours after a special edition of Iceland’s Kastljós current affairs discussion programme on the ‘Panama Papers’ was broadcast, linking the name of the Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson and two senior government officials with assets in offshore tax havens.

The tension in parliament when the PM spoke was palpable ...

The tension in parliament when the PM spoke was palpable - and visible. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Eggert Jóhannesson

Estimates of the size of the crowd vary between 9,000 and 23,000. Whatever the number, this was certainly one of the biggest political demonstrations in Icelandic history.

The biggest such protest ever seen, say police.

The biggest such protest ever seen, say police. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Styrmir Kári

MPs spent over three hours giving their preliminary thoughts on the current political crisis ahead of an official vote of no confidence in the government to be conducted later this week.

Austurvöllur square was full to bursting with angry Icelanders.

Austurvöllur square was full to bursting with angry Icelanders. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Júlíus

From 5pm onwards, the angry words of parliamentarians inside were given an acoustic background of banging drums and shouts of ‘incompetent government’ from the thousands gathered outside.

PM Gunnlaugsson left the parliament chamber before the debate was ...

PM Gunnlaugsson left the parliament chamber before the debate was over. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Eggert

PM Gunnlaugsson has apologised for certain aspects of his involvement in this affair, but remains adamant that he will not be standing down. The usual Tuesday weekly cabinet meeting is scheduled to go ahead as usual.

Attending police offices were at times hit by the projectiles ...

Attending police offices were at times hit by the projectiles thrown by protestors. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Júlíus Sigurjónsson

Tomorrow’s planned parliamentary session has been cancelled so debate will not continue until Wednesday, at the earliest. Organisers of today’s demonstration have spoken of repeating action until they secure the resignation of the PM.

The demonstration reportedly went off peacefully, nobody was injured, and no arrests were made.

'Elections now!' is the simple demand of these protestors.

'Elections now!' is the simple demand of these protestors. Photo: Iceland Monitor/Kristján

Weather

Cloudy

Today

6 °C

Rain showers

Tomorrow

6 °C

Overcast

Thursday

7 °C

Warning: Yellow More

Exchange rates

USD USD 111.84 EUR EUR 131.55
GBP GBP 147.10 DKK DKK 17.64
NOK NOK 13.74 SEK SEK 12.71
CHF CHF 115.77 JPY JPY 0.99
ISK price of selected currencies, according to the official exchange rate of the Central Bank of Iceland. Updated daily.