Icelanders Want Referendum, Not Necessarily Membership

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Icelanders Want Referendum, Not Necessarily Membership

By Páll Stefánsson
Berlin

From Berlin. Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

Seventy-two percent of Icelanders would like to hold a national referendum on whether or not to continue membership talks with the European Union, according to a new poll conducted by Gallup. The Icelandic government is seeking to withdraw from the talks.

In the same poll, 47 percent of respondents said that they are against joining the EU while 37 percent support accession, visir.is reports. 

In June 2010, a Gallup poll found that 26 percent of Icelanders wanted to join the EU while 59 percent were against it.

People living in Reykjavík are more positive towards joining than people living in rural Iceland. The poll also found a correlation between education and attitude towards EU membership with those with a higher education more positive towards the idea.

Roughly 50,000 people—20 percent of eligible voters in Iceland—have signed a petition calling for a national referendum.

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