Belfast Telegraph

Panama Papers: Iceland names Sigurdur Ingi Johannsson as next PM

Iceland's right-wing coalition government has named Agriculture Minister Sigurdur Ingi Johanssonn as new prime minister, a day after his predecessor was forced to step down following the Panama Papers scandal.

The Progressive Party and the Independence Party agreed during talks on Wednesday to hand the prime minister post to 53-year-old Mr Johannssonn, replacing Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson,  Progressive Party MP Hoskuldur Thorhallsson told reporters.


The appointment comes after Mr Gunnlaugsson said he has not resigned but simply stepped aside for a period of time after the leak of the “Panama Papers”, according to a press release from his office.

The so-called “Panama Papers” from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca, reportedly show that Mr Gunnlaugsson and his wife Anna Sigurlaug Palsdottir had an offshore firm in the British Virgin Islands to allegedly shield investments worth millions, sparking wide-spread protests in the country.

The shell company, Wintris, was set up in 2007, according to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) which published the papers. But it was not declared when Mr Gunnlaugsson entered parliament two years later.

The statement from Mr Gunnlaugsson had suggested that the vice-chairman of the Progressive Party should take over the office of Prime Minister for “an unspecified amount of time”.

“The Prime Minister has not resigned and will continue to serve as Chairman of the Progressive Party,” it said.

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