New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced on Thursday that the nation now plans to enact extreme gun laws in the wake of last week’s terrorist attack: Banning semiautomatic firearms and forcing citizens to turn in the banned weapons.
On Thursday, Ardern appeared to take her comments even further, saying at a press conference:
In the meantime, we are asking all current holders of military-style semi-automatic weapons and assault rifles to visit www.police.govt.nz. There they will find details of the weapons included in this ban. In the next 48 hours, a form will be available on this site that we are asking these gun owners to complete, identifying what banned guns they hold. The police will then arrange for these weapons to be handed over, and eventually destroyed. Details of the weapons handed back by owners that are covered by the ban will also be taken to ensure that fair and reasonable compensation is paid once the buyback is in place. If owners are unable to complete the online form, they are able to contact the police on the phone to arrange the handover of these now-banned guns…
…As the legislation is developed, we will determine the time available for the return of military-style semi-automatic weapons and assault rifles, and the duration of the buyback scheme. I can assure people that there will be time for the returns to be made, and that they will not be criminalized overnight. After a reasonable period for returns, those who continue to possess these guns will be in contravention of the law. Currently, the penalties for this range from fines of up to $4,000 and or three years in prison. The draft legislation will look to increase these penalties.
Moments later, Ardern added: “But be assured, this is just the beginning of the work we need to do.” – READ MORE