It is estimated that there are up to 30,000 unregistered firearms in circulation in Iceland, compared to 73,000 registered firearms, as stated in a recent article in police journal Lögreglublaðið by police officer Runólfur Þórhallsson, visir.is reports today.
Runólfur emphasizes that the police do not want to carry weapons on a daily basis but that it is important to have access to firearms in the case of an emergency. According to Runólfur, there has been a large increase in unregistered guns in Iceland and AK-47s have been brought to the country on Russian trawlers, which he points out are much larger than MP5s.
Visir.is notes that AK-47s were used in the attack in Paris last week while the Icelandic police have access to MP5s.
Runólfur wrote the article in Lögreglublaðið before the attacks in Paris last week, when the issue of Norway providing Iceland with 250 MP5s was being reported on, visir.is reports.
After a heated debate on whether the Icelandic police would and should carry guns and whether tax payers should pay for them, it was decided to return the MP5s to Norway. It became clear that they were not a gift from Norway as originally assumed but that Iceland would rather have to pay for them.