Panel proposes tighter gun laws after massacre

AFP - [email protected]
Panel proposes tighter gun laws after massacre

An independent panel on Monday unveiled proposals to tighten arms laws in Norway which suffered its worst peacetime attack in July when a right-wing extremist killed 77 people.


The committee, instituted in June last year before the July 22nd carnage, said the 50-year-old weapons laws needed to be replaced with tighter legislation.

It said a medical certificate should be mandatory for buying a first weapon, suggested regular checks on weapon owners and the listing of guns that take lead ammunition, which are theoretically banned from use.

The eight members of the panel said they favoured a broad ban on individual possession of pistols and semi-automatic weapons.

The review was set up after Anders Behring Breivik in July set off a bomb outside government offices in Oslo and then shot scores of youngsters at a Labour youth summer camp on an island near the capital.

During his shooting spree he used a rifle and a revolver -- a Ruger Mini 14 lightweight semi-automatic carbine and a German-made Glock pistol -- to kill 69 people.

The 32-year-old managed to get legal permission for the weapons on the grounds that he was a member of a shooting club and also hunted.

The justice ministry said it would study the proposals before commenting.

Prosecutors last Tuesday declared Behring Breivik criminally insane when he carried out the deadly rampage after two psychiatrists who examined him concluded that he suffered from paranoid schizophrenia.

By removing Behring Breivik's criminal responsibility, the diagnosis will probably see him sentenced to receive psychiatric care in a closed institution -- possibly for the rest of his life -- instead of prison.



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