Firefighters Fought Wildfires Near Eruption Site Until 2 AM

iceland volcano 2023

Firefighters worked until 2 AM extinguishing wildfires that have arisen as a result of the eruption on the Reykjanes Peninsula. A fire marshall with the Grindavík Fire Brigade told RÚV that there was plenty of work to be done today.

Managed to extinguish small fires near the trail

Firefighters worked to extinguish wildfires in the vicinity of the eruption site at Litli-Hrútur until 2 AM. Daníel Karlsson, Duty Officer with the Grindavík Fire Brigade, told Mbl.is this morning that the firefighting had gone well: “It went well. We managed to put out the smaller fire near the trail to the eruption site.”

According to Daníel, preparations for the day’s firefighting began at 8 AM.

Thick blue smoke covers the hiking trail

Einar Sveinn Jónsson, Fire Marshall with the Grindavík Brigade, is among those who have fought the wildfires near the eruption site. Einar told RÚV this morning that the outlook had often been rosier and that there was a significant amount of smoke.

“Naturally, it’s quite windy, so the smoke covers the trail. Thick, blue smoke from the wildfires blow through the final 2-3 kilometres of the trail, which makes it completely impossible to hike the trail. It is barely passable by car, due to pollution; you can hardly see.”

Einar told RÚV that the firefighting last night and into the early hours of today went well: “But there’s quite a bit of work left. Today’s task will probably be challenging, considering the amount of pollution. But it hasn’t gotten so bad that we have to stop.”

Teen Dies in Þrengslavegur Car Crash

Small boat fishermen crowd the Arnarstapi harbour each summer for the coastal fishing season

An 18-year-old motorist has died after an accident on Þrengslavegur in South Iceland yesterday morning.

Vehicle veered off the road

The South Iceland Police was notified of a car accident at 8:38 AM yesterday on Þrengslavegur, which links the Ring Road to southern coastal towns. The vehicle veered off the road and rolled multiple times. Authorities temporarily closed Þrengslavegur for on-site operations.

The driver of the vehicle, who was 18 years old, was pronounced dead upon arrival at the National University Hospital. The identity of the driver has yet to be revealed.

The cause of the crash remains under investigation by the South Iceland Police and the Accident Investigation Board.

8.9% Increase in Foreign Nationals Living in Iceland

pedestrian street Laugavegur Reykjavík

70,307 foreign nationals were registered as residents in Iceland as of July 1, which is an increase of 5,722 persons since December 1 of last year (or 8.9%). Iceland’s total population as of July 1 was 393,955.

Greatest Relative Increase Among Palestinians, Belarusians

According to Registers Iceland, 70,307 foreign nationals were registered as residents in Iceland as of July 1. This marks an increase of 5,722 people (8.9%) since December 1 of last year.

Significant population increases were noted among Polish, Ukrainian, and Romanian nationals. The Ukrainian resident count rose by 43.4% (982 individuals), now totalling 3,247; the number of Romanian residents in Iceland increased by 14.7% (534 individuals), standing at 4,157; and Polish residents, the largest foreign national group, grew by 7.2% (1,677 individuals), reaching a total of 24,973.

As noted by Registers Iceland, the most significant relative growth among foreign nationals was seen among Belarusian citizens, with a 46.7% rise, or 14 individuals. Palestinian nationals increased by 39.4%, or by 122 individuals.

During the same period, the Icelandic citizen count saw a minor increase of 1,062, or 0.3%. Iceland’s total population as of July 1 was 393,955.

Pussy Riot Performs at LungA Art Festival in Seyðisfjörður

Pussy Riot

The protest and performance art group Pussy Riot took the stage at the LungA art festival in Seyðisfjörður last night, RÚV reports. This is the first time that the group performs in Iceland after two of its members were granted Icelandic citizenship.

“Cannot express the honour in words”

The LungA art festival, which is held annually in Seyðisfjörður in East Iceland, began last Monday, July 10. Among the performers at the festival is Pussy Riot, a Russian feminist protest and performance art group, which took the stage last night.

Pussy Riot’s show, referred to as a play, is entitled Riot Days and is based on the eponymous book by Pussy Riot member Maria Alyokhina. As noted on the group’s website, Riot Days is “a story of resistance, repression, and revolution in a mixture of concert, rally, theatre, and political happening.”

Read More: Velvet Terrorism (Iceland Review speaks to Pussy Riot’s Maria Alyokhina)

Pussy Riot has recently toured parts of Europe with Riot Days, with the LungA art festival being the last stop on the journey. As noted by RÚV, this is the group’s first concert in Iceland since two of its members received Icelandic citizenship. Speaking to RÚV, Maria Alyokhina stated that she was grateful for having been granted citizenship. “I cannot express this honour in words.”

Maria also commented on the group’s performance: “I think it’s very important to find these bridges and use the common language of art to talk to each other because the war is about discrimination and hatred.”