Violent acts in Iceland’s capital region are increasing. They reached a peak with 1,036 such violations being reported in 2000 and then decreased to 692 in 2005. Since then violence has increased again with 919 acts of violence being reported in 2007.
The situation is worsening still, according to preliminary numbers for 2008. In the first quarter of this year 227 violent acts were reported to police compared to 197 in the first quarter of 2007 and 159 in the first quarter of 2006, 24 Stundir reports.
“Acts of violence obviously increased again in 2006,” said Rannveig Thórisdóttir, a sociologist at the Capital Region Police. “However, we have seen fluctuations before and worse numbers than this. And if the increase in population is considered, the development is not as negative as it appears at first glance.”
Violence has increased the most in the neighborhood of central Reykjavík. During the first quarters of 2004 to 2007, 60 to 70 violent acts were committed on average in that area. In the first quarter of this year, 96 acts of violence were reported to police.
A similar development can be detected in the Reykjavík suburb of Breidholt. The average income is the lowest in central Reykjavík and Breidholt compared to other neighborhoods in the city. In other districts, acts of violence have either decreased or their number has remained the same.