Icelandic Government May Boycott FIFA World Cup

Guðlaugur Þór, Minister for Foreign Affairs. By Estonian Foreign Ministry [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

It is possible the Icelandic government will boycott the FIFA World Cup in Russa next June in solidarity with Britain. The British government accuse the Russian government of being responsible for a neurotoxin attack in Salisbury a few weeks ago. If this will be the case, no Icelandic official will attend the tournament. The Minister for Foreign Affairs says that no final decision has been made, but it is clear that the Icelandic male football team will compete. This is reported by ruv.is

The Icelandic ambassador in Russia asked the Icelandic government to be careful about how they want to promote Iceland during the World Cup. The world has shown Iceland much interest due to the team competing.

Guðlaugur Þór Þórðarson, Minister for Foreign Affairs, says that it is a unique opportunity to get to compete in the competition. “We are not just the smallest nation to ever compete in the World Cup; we are the smallest by a long run.”

“It is very important we use the opportunity when so many eyes are on us to promote Iceland in the best way possible,” he added. The emphasis will be sustainability, equality, human rights, the fishing industry, geothermal heat and creative industries like literature.

Theresa May, Britains Prime Minister, says it was Russia who was behind the attack on the counter-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury two weeks ago. No MPs nor the British royal family will go to the World Cup this summer as a protest. The Danish government says they support the decision.

“This was a serious event that doesn’t only affect the British people. We need to discuss where we (the government) will go from here and talk to our allies. No decision has been made regarding Icelandic MPs attending the World Cup or not. We are still discussing the matter with our allies to see what our reaction will be,” Guðlaugur Þór said.