EU gun proposals cause outrage

EUThe European Commission announced on 18 November a series of proposed amendments to the EU firearms directive, imposing tighter restrictions on the acquisition and possession of firearms in the European Union. Proposals include a ban on certain semi-automatic firearms, restricting licences to five years and medical tests for firearms owners. Shooting organisations across the EU have voiced their concerns.

The amendments have been proposed as an anti-terrorism measure, firstly as a reaction to the Charlie Hebdo shootings earlier this year, and then ramped up in the wake of the attacks in Paris in November. However, the majority of the amendments seem to specifically target legal firearms ownership.

Among the most problematic of the proposals is the complete ban of “semi-automatic firearms for civilian use which resemble weapons with automatic mechanisms”, mandatory medical tests for those applying for or renewing a firearms licence, and the creation of an EU-wide database of shooters so member states can easily share information.

Additionally, the amendment that firearms licences “shall not exceed five years” will directly impact campaigns by the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) to extend licences to 10 years as a means of easing pressure on the licensing process.

BASC has reacted to the amendments, saying the organisation is working with the Home Office and the Federation of European Hunting Associations (FACE).

Peter Glenser, BASC council member and firearms legal specialist said: “It is important to recognise the difference between legitimate sporting firearms and illegal weapons. We fully support moves by the EU to give legal force to this distinction and to tackle terrorism. Governments should ensure that new laws separate lawful ownership and the use of sporting guns from illegal firearms used in terrorism.”

FACE has also published a press release, saying: “FACE supports the European Commission’s initiatives in the fight against terrorism and illegal practices. FACE nonetheless questions how the Commission’s proposal to further restrict the lawful possession of firearms by hunters and sports shooters would prevent terrorists from committing atrocities. Illegally manufactured and/or trafficked firearms are readily available from the black market within the EU or from outside its borders.

“FACE underlines that no link exists between the possession of legal civilian firearms for hunting and shooting purposes and criminal behaviour and terrorism.”

Meanwhile, a petition on change.org entitled ‘You cannot stop terrorism by restricting legal gun ownership’, campaigning against the amendments, has garnered over 43,000 signatures in just two days.

For more information, the official press release is available online, as is the full list of amendments.

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3 comments on “EU gun proposals cause outrage
  1. Another GREAT victory for the politicians and civil servants who are so far detached from reality its actually quite scary !
    Quite how a medical will determine if someone is a terrorist is the first thing that needs to be answered and then address the stupidity of open borders as well as low priority on stopping illegal weapons. NO…as usual pick on the law abiding minority to score political points from and pacify the public into thinking something practical IS being done. Dont you just know this Europe and not America. The faster we get this referendum the better.

  2. Cameron Smith says:

    This proposed draconian EU Legislation, will only effect Lawful Firearms Owners, and will only make 1,000s in the Firearms Industry redundant, and criminalize law abiding shooters, who have done nothing wrong,there is no link between, lawful gun ownership for sport, and illegal black Market guns used by Terrorists, in Paris and elsewhere.
    The compensation bill if they are willing to pay it ???,will be billions of Euros,and what will it achieve, NOTHING, but destroy our sport.
    It will have no effect on illegal Firearms, or on terrorists,as usual the legislation is being directed in the wrong direction, the easy law abiding EU Citizen,

  3. Lhycy says:

    Jon Stewart kinda went to the point at the end of his bit 2 post back. When you or I say gun control, that’s what we are talikng about. We have rational discussions about registration, sale and transfer, magazine size and military design. My big thing is training and certification. Lots of different approaches and I know that neither Barbara or any of the regulars have advocated for confiscation.When gun nuts hear the words gun control’ they think gun confiscation’. It’s no accident the gun magazines have been predicting and warning and stoking the fires of paranoia for years! Any gun enthusiast has been getting a steady stream of predictions that they are going to take your guns so they can take away your rights and then they are going to execute you like Stalin and Mao. I’m sorry to say this because it goes against my basic belief in finding common ground negotiating compromise. These people can’t be reasoned with. When gun control is proposed, regardless of what is actually there, some of these kooks will go off violently. And when the government doesn’t confiscate their guns, they will declare it’s because they scared away the feds.

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