Iceland’s President Attacks Gordon Brown over Crisis

News

Iceland’s President Attacks Gordon Brown over Crisis

Icelandic President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson said in an interview with Sky News at Davos yesterday that Iceland would never forgive former U.K. Prime Minister for having put the country’s government on its terrorism list.

olafurragnar-althingi_pk
Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson. Photo: Páll Kjartansson/Iceland Review.

Following the banking collapse, the U.K. invoked anti-terrorism legislation and financial sanctions to freeze Landsbanki’s assets in the U.K due to fear that the Icelandic government would not refund U.K. deposits in Landsbanki’s Icesave online savings accounts.

“The Gordon Brown government decided, to its eternal shame, to put the Icelandic government on a list of terrorist states and terrorist phenomena. We were there together with al Qaeda and the Taliban on that list.”

The EFTA Court is planning to announce its verdict in its cases against Iceland because of the Icesave deposits on Monday.

The Icesave trial covers two cases filed by the EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) against the Icelandic state.

Iceland is accused of violating the European Union directive for not having repaid the EUR 20,000 (ISK 3.4 million, USD 26,000 at today’s exchange rate) insurance for each deposit in Landsbanki’s foreign branches as well as the Icelandic state is said to have discriminated against depositors by fully guaranteeing deposits in banks in Iceland but not in their foreign branches.

Ólafur Ragnar also told Sky News that did not foresee Iceland joining the EU in the next few years. “There is no strong political force in my country arguing that we need to finish the negotiations quickly because we want to join the European Union.”

Ólafur Ragnar is at the World Economic Forum to take part in a session entitled ‘The Economic Malaise and its Perils,’ on Friday.

Click here to read more about the president’s attendance at Davos and here to watch the interview on Sky News.

ZR