Iceland // Reykjavík //

Cold War hotspot


Called at the suggestion of the former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, the Reykjavík superpower summit held at Höfði in 1986 aimed to discuss peace and disarmament between the United States and the Soviet Union. Although agreement was reached on reducing the number of medium-range and intercontinental missiles in Europe and Asia, the thornier question of America’s strategic defence initiative of shooting down missiles in space remained a sticking point. However, the summit achieved one major goal – it brought the world’s attention to Iceland, which, in the mid-1980s, was still relatively unknown as a destination for travellers, in effect marking the beginning of the tourist boom that Iceland is still enjoying today.

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