Thursday, November 27, 2008

Yes Virginia there are anarchists in Iceland. You heard me right, Iceland with a population of about ½ that of the City of Winnipeg when most of the city is on vacation. Iceland, the land of vikings and very bad financial speculation. Molly has reported on the anarchists of Iceland before, on Jan. 11,2008 where she mentioned the sites Saving Iceland and Andsprna, both of which have content in English. Well, the Icelandic anarchists are alive and every much kicking as the following story from A-Infos testifies.
Anarchist arrested in Iceland; Protests go violent:

Last Friday, anarchist Haukur H. from Reykjavik, Iceland was arrested for 2 weeks for participation in environmental blockades in 2006. The pretext of his arrest wasn't the sentence for that protest though. Two weeks ago two anarchists climbed on the roof of the Icelandic parliament and took down the Icelandic flag and put up a flag of a discount supermarket Bonus.

One of them was arrested on his way down, the other managed to escape after a spectacular action of people gathered around. They pushed the cops aside and made way for him to run away. On Friday, Haukur was visiting the building of the parliament (I guess as a part of his university classes), and one of the MPs recognized him as the one who did the flag-busting (he was wearing a mask, but all the protesters in Iceland are well know by the bastards since it is a very small country and Haukur is one of the most active anarchists there).

He was arrested and put in jail for 2 weeks for the sentence he had for the protests in 2006. The thing is that he couldn't have been arrested without getting a letter from the cops three weeks in advance. It is clear that he was arrested to make it impossible for him to take part in further protests against the government which have been taking place every Saturday after huge financial collapse in Icelandic economy in early October 2008.

Last Saturday, some 200-500 people went to the police station in Reykjavik demanding the release of Haukur, the demonstration ended up in clashes, people broke windows of the police station, cops used tear gas.

Haukur was out on Saturday after the clashes at the cop station, someone paid bail for him, still don't know if he has more charges.
Clashes last Saturday in front of Reykjavik main police station:
here's a video of his release:
an article about the events
Flag busting 10 Nov. (photos and video):
PLUS here from Saving Iceland is another take on the events.
Pepper spray used at anti-police protest :
The now regular Saturday protests in front of the Icelandic parliament in Reykjavik went ahead today as planned, but a follow-up demonstration outside the police headquarters ended in the police using pepper spray. During the busy parliament protests, the famous statue of Jonas Sigurdsson was dressed in women’s clothing to remind people of the role of the female half of the population and how they should take a leading role in rebuilding the Icelandic economy.
After the rally, some 200 to 300 people took part in a different protest at the main police station to demand the release of Haukur Himarsson, (the full name of the arrestee only referred to as Haukur H. in the A-Fos post-Molly)who had been arrested last night when police found out he was the person to fly the Bonus supermarket flag from the top of parliament two weeks ago.
After officers in full riot gear used pepper spray to try to disperse the crowds, police eventually released Hilmarsson and the crowd dissipated. It is still not known whether or not the police charged Hilmarsson before his release, however.Hilmarsson was arrested last night after an educational research trip to the Althingi parliament house. He has a suspended 14 days remaining of an 18-day prison sentence he received in 2005 for protests against the Karahnjukar dam.

1 comment:

Larry Gambone said...

Just a crazy thought. Suppose there are 2000 anarchists, near anarchists and sympathizers in Canada. That works out to .0007 of the total population, and in a very large country. Now consider Iceland. If you apply this figure to its population you get an anarchist movement and sympathizers of about 18 people. In such a small and concentrated population anarchists could really have an impact. 50 anarchists in such a place would have the country jumping.