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Saving Iceland protestors arrested

An Icelander, an American and three Europeans were arrested in downtown Reykjavík on Saturday while protesting against heavy industry on behalf of the campaign group Saving Iceland. According to police, they did not have permission for the protests.

The protesters were arrested for participating in a riot, for hindering the jobs of official employees and for not complying with police demands. The American was also charged with violent behavior towards a police officer, Morgunbladid reports.

Between 70 and 100 people participated in the protests on Saturday.

According to Arinbjörn Snorrason, the senior police officer on duty in the capital region, the protesters were blocking traffic on Snorrabraut, one of the main roads used by Reykjavík’s emergency services.

Snorrason said police had instead given permission to the protesters to march down Laugavegur, the city’s main shopping street, but that their offer had been rejected.

Arnthrúdur Thórarinsdóttir, a lawyer for the capital region police, told Morgunbladid it will probably be revealed this week whether a lawsuit will be filed against the protesters. She said it is still unclear whether the four foreign citizens arrested on Saturday will be deported.

Saving Iceland has accused the police of unprovoked arrests. The protesters were released yesterday, Fréttabladid reports.

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