NZ Adopts Strict Gun Control Measures following Christchurch Massacre
By Staff, Agencies
New Zealand rolled out a ban on military-style semi-automatic and assault rifles following last week’s massacre in Christchurch, which saw 50 people martyred at two mosques in the worst mass shooting in the country’s history.
High-capacity magazines and parts used to convert other weapons into the banned guns are also banned under the new laws, which PM Jacinda Ardern expects to take effect by April 11.
A buyback scheme will also be put in place for weapons on the banned list.
“On 15 March our history changed forever. Now, our laws will too,” Ardern said at a press conference on Thursday. New Zealand follows the example of Australia, which banned all semi-automatic weapons following a 1996 mass shooting in Port Arthur that killed 35 people.
The most pronounced reactions came from Americans, many of whom believe similar laws are soon to be introduced stateside. Whether they want those laws is another matter entirely.
Democratic politicians praised the move, while gun control advocates looked westward with envy.
Republicans, however, were repulsed.
Reports of New Zealanders voluntarily turning in their guns came in for particular derision.
Many worried that the Christchurch shooting and subsequent crackdowns – on guns, on speech, even on watching the livestreamed video of the slaughter – are a form of dress rehearsal for a planned US clampdown.