News flash: Iceland President did not sign Icesave into Law this Morning

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News flash: Iceland President did not sign Icesave into Law this Morning

At a meeting at the President’s residence at Bessastadir this morning, Minister of Finance Steingrímur J. Sigfússon put forward a motion that the President sign the Icesave-law with his signature.  Usually this signature is ceremonial, but the president has been under pressure to refuse to sign the bill, thereby putting the law to a national vote.

This morning the President said that he would take his time to consider the law. He said that 24 hours had not passed since the bill was passed Althingi, Iceland’s parliament (this is true but has no legal significance).

The President said that he would meet, as promised, with representatives of the so-called InDefence-group that has been against the bill and has urged the President not to sign. This meeting will be held on January 2. Talking to the press at Bessastadir after the cabinet meeting the President said that he would take into account the fact that a large number of the population had signed a petition urging him not to sign. He also said that he had listened to what members of Althingi had said in the past few days.

President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson said that nobody had commented on his declaration at the meeting.

A number of protesters came to Bessastadir this morning to demonstrate their opposition to the Icesave-law. Some sat on the road to Bessastadir, trying to hinder Cabinet Ministers on their way from the meeting. When Ministers left the Presidents residence some protestors called: “Traitor!” There were no arrests according to mbl.is.

Bylgjan radio said that Finance Minister Steingrímur J. Sigfússon had been the first to leave the meeting. According to the report he left in a hurry and looked grim. He did not answer questions,. Foreign Minister Össur Skarphédinsson was asked why the ministers had looked so grave after the meeting. He said that one should not expect them to be glad at the end of a difficult week.