New Zealand Gun Owners Begin Handing In Their Weapons

gun reform in new zealandPA/Pexels

In the aftermath of the Christchurch twin mosque terror attack which left 50 people dead, New Zealanders have begun handing in their firearms. 

Police said that at least 37 firearms had been handed in to police officers around the country, as of Tuesday night, after Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern encouraged citizens to surrender their firearms.

Many have surrendered their weapons for destruction:

John Hart was among those who surrendered a firearm, which he had previously kept on his 20-hectare sheep and beef farm located north of Masterton.

The former Green Party candidate reasoned on Twitter:

On the farm they are a useful tool in some circumstances, but my convenience doesn’t outweigh the risk of misuse.

Hart is one of the group who have surrendered their guns, as advised by the Prime Minister.

Police reiterated the sentiment in a statement:

As the prime minister announced, anybody wanting to surrender their firearms to police is welcome to do so.

You can contact your local police station or your local arms officer to get advice on the safe transport of the firearm to police.

This will also enable our staff to be aware of your arrival ahead of time.

Police advised those considering a gun purchase to wait a few days to get some certainty on the laws before investing.

Ardern is expected to announced gun reform in New Zealand in the coming days.

Measures such as a ban on semi-automatic rifles were flagged as possible by her attorney general, David Parker, one day after the massacre.

Fish and Game NZ, a key organisation in New Zealand’s hunting lobby, also supported calls for a ban and buyback of military-style semi-automatic weapons and would support a limitation on the sale of high-capacity magazines, which could prevent people from illegally modifying a smaller capacity semi-automatic rifle into a military-style weapon.

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