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Handguns Claim The Lives Of 500,000 Per Year

Handguns Claim The Lives Of 500,000 Per Year

Experts Demand Stricter Controls Of Weapon Shops

By Marietta Gross - Scoop Media Auckland

Every year 500,000 people die from assault rifle, revolver and handgun shootings. Among the victims are thousands of children. The UN Children’s Fund UNICEF and the Bonn International Centre for Conversion (BICC) fear that the worldwide action programme is not being implemented. On Monday a UN-Conference on rifles began in New York.

UNICEF and the BICC are worried that basic conditions won’t be reached, as global weapon suppliers from China, Russia and other nations deny limitations of weapons exports and the United States will not restrict the private possession of firearms. In this context Germany could act as an icon nation in the fight against the worldwide flood of handguns.

The BICC proposals include binding regulations to mark weapons as well as brokerages. Also ammunition should be strictly controlled. Excessive weapons should be collected and demolished.

It is proposed that the German government should hinder the passing on of weapons originating in Germany and also the delivery of weapons which were produced somewhere else under German Licence, if these transfers aren’t in accordance with the German rules for ammunition export.

Dietrich Garlichs, Executive of UNICEF-Germany, says: “Handguns are the weapons of mass destruction of our period. Rifles such as the German G 3 or the Russian Kalashnikov kill more people than heavy weapon systems. And they enable the service of child soldiers.”

Worldwide about 600 million rifles exist. “Without a solution to gun control also the Millennium Development Aims won’t be reached”, commented the Director of the BICC, Peter Croll.

At the UN’s first conference on handguns in 2001, the international community decided on a worldwide action programme. But in fact only a few countries took actions.


© Scoop Media

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