The General Affairs and Education Committee’s parliamentary bill to grant 51 individuals Icelandic citizenship was passed in Alþingi, the Icelandic parliament, last night, RÚV reports. Sixty-two MPs out of 63 voted in favor of the proposal and one abstained: Minister of Justice Sigríður Andersen.
Sigríður explained her vote by stating she had previously abstained in a vote of this kind in parliament. There is, however, one difference now: the issue is within her portfolio as minister of justice, and she could have an impact on the process.
"I am indicating that I find this practice here, as it is today, with a general resolution by the parliament on individual applications, not to be in line with the equality that people would want in this issue," stated Sigríður, adding that she would submit a bill in the autumn session to amend the handling of applications for citizenship within the Directorate of Immigration.
According to a decision by the Directorate of Immigration, around 1,000 individuals are granted citizenship in Iceland every year.
During the spring period, the committee received 103 applications for citizenship for 129 individuals. The youngest applicant was Ottó Ægir Gíslason Moody, who was born this year in the United States. The oldest are Callie Grace McDonald, born in the United States, and Lina Ashouri, born in Syria, both in 1963.