Fresh wave of protests outside Icelandic parliament

Iceland’s economy may be showing signs of a slow recovery; but the wave of house repossessions is not abating and the government is coming under criticism for its perceived failures in protecting householders – something that was a key election promise.

A group of protesters camped outside parliament in tents on Thursday night under the banner “Tjaldborg”. The reason for the name comes from the “Skjaldborg” or “wall of shields” that the government promised to metaphorically erect to protect vulnerable householders. “Tjaldborg”, on the other hand, sounds very similar but means “Tent City”.

More protesters began gathering in support and one of the biggest political protests since the “pots and pans revolution” was underway by lunch time yesterday. Yesterday was the beginning of the new October session of parliament – which is the reason for the protest.

The thousand-strong crowd was significantly smaller than those which toppled the former government in spring 2009. Police described the protest and mostly peaceful – although a serious breach occurred when a window was broken at the Domkirkjan cathedral while MPs were inside for the traditional first day of parliament church service. Protesters also attempted to pelt them with eggs as they entered the church, Visir.is reported.

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