Gun control lobbies split on new Liberal plan for assault rifles

  • Gun control lobbies split on new Liberal plan for assault rifles

Gun control lobbies split on new Liberal plan for assault rifles

Members of a gun-control lobby that has fought against gun use since a massacre of 14 women at a Montreal engineering school in 1989 and supported the Liberals through a series of gun measures in the past two decades, slammed the government for going back on the latest promise to enforce a buyback of assault-style rifles following the Nova Scotia shooting.

The buy-back program will be voluntary and gun owners may choose to keep their weapons, however, under the new legislation it would be illegal to use, transport or resell the outlawed guns and gun owners will be required to complete a new licensing process.

Blair emphasizes that this would only apply to banned weapons.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the bill also proposes a buyback of recently banned firearms the government considers assault-style weapons.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the government looked very carefully at buyback programs elsewhere, including in New Zealand and Australia, where stiff penalties occur for not turning weapons in, and determined an optional model was "most effective".

Newly tabled federal gun legislation would allow municipalities to ban handguns through bylaws restricting their possession, storage and transportation. Individuals who violate these municipal by-laws would be subject to federal penalties, including licence revocation and criminal sanctions.

During his presentation, Public Safety Minister Bill Blair reminded Canadians gun ownership in Canada is a privilege and not a right. They lied. They lied to us. People who had legally bought these firearms prior to the ban were given an amnesty while the government figured out what to do next.

"We all know we'll be hearing the well-funded gun lobby", Trudeau said as he laid out new restrictions in a media briefing with his Public Safety Minister and Minister of Justice and Attorney General Tuesday morning.

The Trudeau government came under fire Monday from one of its strongest support groups on the gun file as the Liberals tabled legislation meant to reinforce the sweeping semi-automatic rifle ban it suddenly imposed previous year.

He said that he expects many owners will be inclined to surrender their guns, given they've been rendered legally useless.

"Reasonable Canadians should ask themselves if they think that anything in this bill will stop the shootings in downtown Toronto or Vancouver or the violence or property crime we see in rural communities".

"We are not targeting law-abiding citizens who own guns to go hunting or for sport shooting.The measures we're proposing are concrete and practical", he said at a news conference in Ottawa.

- Introduce tighter restrictions on imports of ammunition, and ensure the prohibition of imports, exports, sales and transfers of all replica firearms.

"Today's announcement builds on the important measures our government has already taken to keep Canadians safe in their communities".

Canadian Doctors for Protection from Guns (CDPG) is welcoming the introduction of new gun control legislation.