Panama Papers: Iceland's Prime Minister resigns following public outcry

Billy Bambrough
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Protesters have taken to the streets in Iceland over the Prime Minister's involvement in the Panama Papers scandal (Source: Getty)

Iceland's Prime Minister Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson has resigned following the Panama Papers scandal, local media has reported.

Earlier suggestions that Gunnlaugsson would dissolve parliament and call a new election were blocked by the country's president.

The country's opposition party yesterday demanded a vote of confidence, after huge protests across the country. It was revealed in leaked documents from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca on Sunday that Gunnlaugsson concealed millions of dollars worth of investments in an offshore company.

The documents showed Gunnlaugsson and his wife owned offshore firm Wintris.

The Icelandic PM put a request for a snap election to president Olafur Ragnar Grimsson earlier.

Gunnlaugsson said this morning he would dissolve parliament if he did not receive the backing of his coalition partner, the Independence Party, to remain in office.

The announcement that new elections could be called was made on Gunnlaugsson's Facebook page in Icelandic.

A translation of the statement read:

I went over it with the chairman of the Independence that if parliamentarians did not trust themselves to support the government to complete the joint ventures I would break the parliament and call for elections at the earliest.

Iceland's PM has been embroiled in the Panama Papers scandal that has seen various political and business leaders implicated in hiding cash in tax-free offshore accounts.

British Prime Minister David Cameron has been forced to defend himself from accusations he has not done enough to stop the wealthy from dodging taxes.

Leader of the Labour party Jeremy Corbyn said the PM must explain to the country “exactly what’s been going on” with his family’s financial affairs.

Panama papers: What you need to know

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