I love Iceland

I routinely brag about Iceland to my friends and family. I am immensely proud of the progress it has made in women’s rights, its representation in government and business and how it has decreased the pay gap between genders. I am doubly proud of the gay rights, the fact Iceland was not only the first to elect a female president but also the first to elect an openly gay head of state – and a lesbian at that. The low rate of incarceration, recidivism, lack of violence at the hands of police, low crime, functional education and healthcare are also things I celebrate and make me swell with pride thinking of my new home. With all that said I am utterly ashamed at how miserable Icelandic officials treat asylum seekers.

Death by stoning
In January 2014, Jonathan Goodluck, president of Nigeria, signed into law the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act which prohibits gay relationships, marriages, membership and other involvement in gay societies and organizations. Within a short period, the federal police department compiled a list of 168 gay people who would subsequently be jailed.
In January 2014, Jonathan Goodluck, president of Nigeria, signed into law the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act which prohibits gay relationships, marriages, membership and other involvement in gay societies and organizations. Within a short period, the federal police department compiled a list of 168 gay people who would subsequently be jailed.

Iceland has a deplorable record in regard to asylum seekers, one of the lowest acceptance rates in the EU. It also has a very poor historical record, disallowing jewish asylum seekers in WWII as well as asking that black American soldiers not be stationed at Keflavik air base. One of recent examples is the case of Martin, a Nigerian gay man seeking asylum in Iceland.

In 2012 Martin was arrested upon arrival after procuring a false passport and detained while his application for asylum was being processed only to be rejected by the Directorate of Immigration in 2013. Now the Icelandic Ministry of the Interior has endorsed, for a second time, the decision of the Directorate to deny his request on the grounds of the Dublin II regulation, which holds only one member state responsible for an asylum application. That means Martin will be sent to Italy which he first escaped to and then most likely back to Nigeria.

Currently in Nigeria, being gay is punishable by fines, jail and even death by stoning and these punishments are actively enforced. It is no wonder that Martin fled Nigeria to look for a better life. Italy let him languish for 9 years in deplorable conditions. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that a country such as Italy, lacking gay rights, denied his asylum status, and for that reason and others he ended up in Iceland.

Unimaginable dangers

All the rejected asylum seekers make me sad to hear about. But I cannot identify directly with a woman fleeing a rape riddled country or someone seeking to leave a war-torn country. However I can identify with a man fleeing a homophobic country and it makes me infinitely sad he is being denied the same opportunity I was granted.

You see, I was born to a religious family in Virginia, grew up in a homophobic area and was sent to private religious schools where all of my friends and classmates were religious. Hardly the situation in Nigeria but the lack of any gay or lesbian role models, the inability to talk about my sexuality as I was figuring it out and fear for my own safety if family or strangers discovered I was gay,  lead me to experiment with unprotected sex with numerous partners, feel stressed, constantly frightened, guilty because I thought being gay was wrong and immensely lonely.  I cannot imagine how much worse it must be for someone in a country with even worse rights for gay people.

I have no doubt that all legalities were followed in the case of Martin. But sending him out of Iceland will inevitably land him back in Nigeria where he faces a real threat to his life and definitely an ability to lead a normal life, full of friends and happiness. From a year now, Martin could be dead based on this sole decision.

Money in, people out
After authorities in Reykjavík shut its gates to the Austrian Jews in 1938 the following lead article was published in an Icelandic newspaper: "It must be welcomed that the authorities have shown firmness in dealing with these vagabonds....Hopefully the authorities will ensure...that foreigners, who are still here without a residence permit will be sent out of the country immediately."
After authorities in Reykjavík shut its gates to the Austrian Jews in 1938 the following lead article was published in an Icelandic newspaper: “It must be welcomed that the authorities have shown firmness in dealing with these vagabonds….Hopefully the authorities will ensure…that foreigners, who are still here without a residence permit will be sent out of the country immediately.” Photo taken at Croydon airport, in South London, in 1939.

I understand the concept of the Dublin II Regulation so that an individual cannot attempt refugee status in every EU country, costing countless Euro as well as time from every country. But in the case of Martin it seems merely a convenient excuse for Iceland to fall back on legalities and pretend that its hands are tied and it must send him back. In reality Iceland is allowed to let him stay (the regulation does not require deportation) but officials regularly take too long giving answers according to this same law, engage in illegal arrests of those with falsified passports and then use this internationally recognized illegal arrest record to deny asylum.

And why is Iceland a signatory of these international laws if not to help those most in need who flee persecution? Is it to only appear progressive while using the minutia of the law to deny as many as legally possible?  Iceland and the companies within have no qualms about using inexpensive labor from abroad to manufacture clothes, design items or to import workers from other EU countries to construct infrastructure. But then when it comes to participating in the global effort to help refugees the Icelandic government turns a blind eye. It seems only money is allowed to cross international borders, not actual people.


Based on an open letter written by Ben Chompers to the Ministry of the interior.

Á. Óskarsson
Á. Óskarsson

Á. Óskarsson offers a variety of products and services to sports centers, swimming pools, schools, kindergartens, and the general public. The company specializes in sport-related products, activity-focused games, and a wide range of solutions for sports facilities.

Á. Óskarsson has been involved in numerous big projects related to building sports facilities and has made it their benchmark to offer good quality products and equipment since the company was founded.

See links to social media in the upper left-hand corner


Á. Óskarsson selur fjölbreytt vöruúrval fyrir íþróttahús, sundlaugar, skóla og leikskóla og einnig ýmsar vörur til einkaafnota. Fyrirtækið selur vörur til íþróttaiðkunnar og leikja ásamt því að bjóða upp á ýmsar lausnir fyrir íþróttamannvirki.

Á. Óskarsson hefur komið að fjölda stórra verkefna við byggingu íþróttamannvirkja og hefur frá stofnun kappkostað að bjóða vandaðar og endingargóðar vörur.

Tenglar á samfélagsmiðla eru í efra horninu vinstra megin.



    Blush was founded in 2011 when it started selling high quality sex products. The goal from the beginning was to change the market and take the discussion about sex products to a higher level. Today Blush provides professional services in a pleasant environment that fulfills different needs, both for individuals and couples. Blush respects diversity and wants to set a good example in all of its messaging to target audiences. Sexual health and equality in sex is important and Blush wants to focus on those issues through education and open discussion. Blush works in a socially responsible manner for society, their customers and the environment.

    Check out Blush’s website: https://blush.is/

    Omnom Chocolate
    - award-winning chocolate maker

      Omnom Chocolate is an Icelandic craft chocolate company based in Reykjavík. We produce handcrafted chocolate from organic cacao beans sourced ethically and sustainably. We’ve developed direct relationships to create premium chocolate with fine flavor cacao beans.

      Our creative flavors are carefully crafted by meticulous chocolate makers. The cacao beans are roasted, winnowed, ground, and refined into melty-smooth chocolate.

      Omnom’s process is one of constant exploration, invention, and experimentation. If it doesn’t please us, if something isn’t absolutely delicious, there’s no reason to be doing it. So, we always start with our taste buds and follow our instincts. Our team searches for the finest ingredients in the world and new ways to improve chocolate. This obsession with knowing where our ingredients come from has led us around the corner to dairy farms in the Icelandic countryside and all the way to rainforest cacao farms of Nicaragua.

      In only a few short years, we’ve grown from our 50 sq. m. petrol station space and become an award-winning chocolate maker. Now, with our headquarters in 101 Reykjavík, our chocolate is sent out around Iceland and all over the world.

      At the end of the day, our goal is to make chocolate.




        Nasdaq (Nasdaq: NDAQ) is a global technology company serving the capital markets and other industries. Our diverse offering of data, analytics, software and services enables clients to optimize and execute their business vision with confidence.

        With over 4,300 employees in 39 offices around the world, at Nasdaq we all contribute to the success of the company and its culture, and each one of us has the ability to make a difference. When it comes to our core mission and values, we embrace the role of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging (DIB) as a fundamental driver of our corporate growth, workplace culture and market development. We strive to create a culture that embraces the power of different perspectives—a culture where people’s unique backgrounds and different experiences helps us fuel innovation and support our clients around the world.

        Our unique position at the center of the capital markets allows us to see firsthand how these values have redefined corporate culture and success, deepening and accelerating our own commitment to champion inclusive growth and prosperity, as we strive to create more equitable opportunities to help people of all backgrounds reach their full potential. Most notably, we published our diversity statistics for the first time in 2020. These metrics serve as a quantitative assessment of where we are today and help determine what strategies we need to adopt to enhance diversity in the workplace. We recognize that we have much work to do, but we are steadfast in our commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive culture—one that reflects the communities in which we live, allows all employees to be their true, authentic selves and fosters individual growth and achievement.

        As we move forward together, we will continue advancing diverse ideas and perspectives that help fulfill the promise of a more inclusive and prosperous world. We aim to set the pace for rethinking capital markets and economies anywhere and everywhere. To learn more about the company, technology solutions and career opportunities, visit us on LinkedIn, on Twitter @Nasdaq, or at www.nasdaq.com.

        Blue Lagoon
        - One of the 25 Wonders of the World

        Named by National Geographic as one of the 25 Wonders of the World, the Blue Lagoon is a shimmering expanse of warmth, relaxation, and rejuvenation. Its unique geothermal seawater
        comes from 2.000 meters within the earth where seawater and freshwater converge in a tectonic realm of porous lava and searing heat. Propelled by extreme pressure, the water ascends to the earth’s surface, emerging enriched with silica, algae, and minerals—the elements that endow Blue Lagoon geothermal seawater with its radiant, healing properties.

        From its humble beginnings in the shadows of a geothermal power plant, Blue Lagoon has evolved into a world of wonder, now encompassing two hotels, three restaurants, three
        geothermal lagoons, a subterranean spa, a renowned line of skin care, a thriving research center, and a wealth of spa and refreshment facilities.

        Achieving harmony with the volcanic landscape, the lagoon and its surrounding architecture embody the unification of the man-made and the natural, and adhere to the highest principles of sustainability.

        The Blue Lagoon. A wonder of the world. A world of wonder.

        - leading financial institution

        Landsbankinn is a leading Icelandic financial institution. It offers a full range of financial services and is the market leader in the Icelandic financial service sector with the largest branch network.

        The present bank was established on 7 October 2008 but the history of its predecessor dates back to 1886. The bank is owned by the National Treasury of Iceland, which holds 98.2% of its share capital, and other shareholders who own 1.8%.

        Landsbankinn’s strategy is to provide comprehensive financial services that meet customer’s needs. It emphasizes providing exemplary service to customers, developing e-banking for their convenience, increasing the efficiency of support functions, modernizing its technology and ensuring effective utilization of its balance sheet.

        The bank’s vision is to be exemplary and its role is to be a trusted financial partner.

        Special emphasis is placed on promoting a performance-oriented culture in the bank. To follow up on the implementation of this strategy, the bank has defined key goals which are measured regularly to determine progress. These goals include, for example, customer satisfaction and loyalty, profitability, cost efficiency and the correlation between risk appetite and employee satisfaction.

        Landsbankinn wishes to lead the development of a sustainable society in Iceland by integrating economic, social and environmental concerns in its operations. The Bank aims to ensure that both its owners and society at large benefit from its activities.

        It intends to achieve this aim by building solid infrastructure and a strong team of 1.100 employees, by listening to its customers and by respecting and encouraging its employees to actively participate in their community. Landsbankinn was a founding member of Festa, a Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility, and is a member of the UN Global Compact.

        Landsbankinn has been a proud sponsor of the Reykjavik Pride since it was first celebrated in Iceland.

        - get inspired

        Dohop allows people to find the cheapest flights available with just one click. Founded in Reykjavik in 2004, it is the only Icelandic company of its kind and quickly became the go-to tool for finding cheap flights among the locals. Dohop finds the best deals among hundreds of different airlines and online travel agencies, to make sure that the user is getting the cheapest price. Dohop also offers hotel and car rental search engines, so users can make all of their travel bookings from a single website.

        Dohop‘s specialty is finding so-called “self-connect” flight options, which can save travelers money by booking a ticket through two or more different airlines. The ability to look for these self-connect option is what sets Dohop apart from its competition, as it can save people hundreds of dollars on certain routes.

        More recently, Dohop has developed a unique product called Dohop Go!, which allows users to check for the cheapest available flights from their home airport. This tool is perfect for those who are looking for travel inspiration but are not willing to overpay for their flight ticket. Dohop Go! is now available in the Dohop Flights App, both for Android and iOS, along with its traditional flight, hotel, and car search engines. “

        VSÓ Ráðgjöf


          VSÓ Ráðgjöf er alhliða ráðgjafar- og verkfræðifyrirtæki sem leggur áherslu á trausta og faglega þjónustu sem tryggir viðskiptavinum hagkvæmustu lausnir hverju sinni, skilar raunverulegum árangri og stuðlar að samkeppnisforskoti.  Á skrifstofum VSÓ í Reykjavík og í Noregi starfar yfir 80 manna samhentur hópur verkfræðinga og annarra tæknimenntaðra starfsmanna.

          - for all your Apple needs

          From starting out as a proper startup with only a good idea and the need to change things, to becoming an established company with 6 employees. Starting from scratch and expanding organically has allowed us to love our expansion and take our customers on the ride with us.

          Macland is located at Laugavegur 23 (101, Downtown Reykjavik)
          For all your Apple needs. We are here.

          Ísey skyr
          - once tasted never forgotten

          Our Story
          Once upon a time, 1,100 years ago in fact, Nordic settlers began arriving in Iceland. They brought with them the skills and knowledge for producing skyr. As time passed, the know-how and recipe for this nutritious food slowly faded out elsewhere in the Nordic region. Luckily, the Icelandic skyr-making tradition continued.

          For centuries, Icelandic skyr formed a cornerstone of the national diet, helping to keep people strong in living conditions that were often harsh. On family farms countrywide, it was the women who nurtured this dairy and passing on both the recipe and the original Icelandic skyr cultures from mother to daughter.

          Ísey skyr builds on this remarkable legacy. It was some of those very same women, the recipients of their mothers’ expertise, who, around 90 years ago, taught Icelandic dairy scientists the art of skyr-making. The production process is more high-tech these days, and the quality standards more rigorous. However, the basic recipe and the use of original cultures to ferment the skimmed milk remain the same. Protein rich, fat-free, creamy and delicious – Ísey skyr is as relevant to consumers now as it was all those centuries ago.
          This is our secret and you are in on it

          You can read more about Ísey skyr on our website.

          Contact Us

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