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New Vote of No Confidence Introduced

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New Vote of No Confidence Introduced

Demonstration

Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

Iceland’s opposition parties have put forth a new bill to the Alþingi parliament declaring no confidence in the entire government and calling for new elections as soon as possible.

The opposition put forward a proposition on Monday declaring no confidence in outgoing PM Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson and his government and calling for elections. The new proposal removes reference to the Prime Minister and is a vote of no confidence in the government overall.
The debate was due to take place yesterday, but the Alþingi schedule was canceled outright due to other political events taking place.

Parliament is meeting this morning from 10.30, with only one item on the agenda: open question time. Einar K. Guðfinnsson, President of Alþingi, yesterday confirmed that the time allowed for open questions will be twice as long as usual today, RÚV reports.

Among those answering questions from MPs will be deputy leader of the Progressive Party and incoming Prime Minister, Sigurður Ingi Jóhannsson; as well as leader of the Independence Party and Minister of Finance Bjarni Benediktsson.

Opposition parties remain angry that the same government is continuing in power almost unchanged, despite the previous PM standing aside. They are also unimpressed that the promised new elections are nearly half a year away, arguing they should be held much sooner.

The Icelandic political establishment has been in turmoil since it was revealed on Sunday April 3 that three government ministers were implicated in the global Panama Papers scandal, relating to offshore businesses. The Icelandic PM decided to step aside from his role, though to remain an MP and the leader of his party. The other two implicated ministers remain and there is palpable public anger and calls from some for new elections right away.

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