Rafn Einarsson, who represented the Progressive Party on the district council for Breiðholt suburb in Reykjavík, requested to be relieved from his duties yesterday after news website Stundin wrote about comments he had written about Muslims on his Facebook page.
“All Muslims should be sent to Saudi Arabia where they belong,” Rafn wrote, according to Stundin. He is said to have often made derogatory and judgmental comments about Muslims in public, including that “none of them can be trusted,” and “Muslims want to kill all gays.”
Many people of foreign origin reside in Breiðholt, 2,100 in the neighborhood Efra-Breiðholt alone.
Sveinbjörg Birna Sveinbjörnsdóttir, who chairs the Progressive Party on Reykjavík City Council, told RÚV that she had met Rafn at noon yesterday and that he had requested to step down from the district council himself. She will take his seat.
Sveinbjörg stated that derogatory comments on minority groups should never be accepted.
Recently, Sveinbjörg and fellow Progressive Party member on Reykjavík City Council Guðfinna Jóhanna Guðmundsdóttir appointed Gústaf Níelsson, who has been criticized for his comments on Muslims and LGBT people, as deputy representative on the city’s Human Rights Council.
Sveinbjörg later admitted that Gústaf’s appointment had been a mistake and that she should have “googled him better,” as she stated on RÚV’s news magazine Kastljós. The appointment ended up being revoked.
In the lead-up to the 2014 Reykjavík City election, Sveinbjörg won votes by declaring her opposition to the building of a mosque in the city and stating her opinion that city authorities should go back on their promise of a free lot for that purpose.