Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir

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This is an Icelandic name. The last name is a patronymic, not a family name; this person is properly referred to by the given name Hanna Birna.
Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir
Minister of the Interior
In office
23 May 2013 – 4 December 2014
Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson
Preceded by Ögmundur Jónasson
Succeeded by Ólöf Nordal
Personal details
Born 12 October 1966
Reykjavík, Iceland
Political party Independence Party
Spouse(s) Vilhjálmur Jens Árnason
Alma mater University of Iceland
Edinburgh University

Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir (12 October 1966) is an Icelandic politician. She was the Minister of Interior after getting elected to the Althing (Icelandic parliament) in 2013 and was Mayor of Reykjavík from 21 August 2008 to 15 June 2010. She represents the Independence Party (sjálfstæðisflokkur).[1][2]

Hanna Birna was the sixth Minister to resign from office because of a political scandal in the history of the Icelandic republic.[3] She got heavily involved into "the leaked memo case" which led to a police investigation into her office and the prison sentence of her political advisor. Former Chief of Police Stefán Eiríksson maintains that Hanna Birna had repeatedly attempted to interfere[4] with the police’s investigation of the leak of confidential information from her ministry. She tried to use her influence to get the journalists who covered the case fired.[5][6] Later her second assistant tried to get those same journalists jailed.[6] Neither happened. The journalists, Jon Bjarki Magnusson and Johann Pall Johannsson, got awarded The Journalists of the Year of 2014 by the Icelandic Union of Journalists.

On 21 November 2014 she resigned as Minister of the Interior as a response of a scandal where her political assistant leaked information and slander regarding asylum seeker on 20 November 2013. The resignition took effect on 4 December 2014.[7] The assistant pleaded guilty for the Reykjavík district court on 11 November 2014. On the day of the resignation a report from the Ombudsman was still pending, Ombudsman started his investigation when he learned of communication between the Minister and the Chief of Police regarding the investigation of the leak.[8][9][10]

She obtained a bachelor's degree in Political science at the University of Iceland in 1991. After that, she got a Master of Science in International and European Politics from Edinburgh University (1993).[2]


Preceded by
Ólafur F. Magnússon
Mayor of Reykjavík
August 2008 – June 2010
Succeeded by
Jón Gnarr