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Can mass shootings be prevented? These countries have tried

2022-05-24T23:05:24.058Z

Four countries in the world have changed their laws after shootings that deeply marked their history, while the United States continues the debate on laws for gun control.



President Obama has addressed the country at least 14 times during his seven years in office, calling for gun control laws to prevent mass shootings.

(Credit: KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images)

(CNN) --

The shootings in the United States in recent weeks, including the one that occurred Tuesday at a Texas elementary school, once again put the focus on the debate about the increase in violence with firearms in the country and its regulation.

A week ago during his visit to Buffalo where an 18-year-old killed 10 people in a supermarket, President Joe Biden addressed gun violence in the United States: the country has recorded at least 198 mass shootings so far in 2022 alone, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which, like CNN, defines a mass shooting as four or more people being shot, not including the shooter.

That same day, the deputy national security adviser at the National Security Council suggested that new executive action on weapons might be on the way, but did not elaborate.

"We have a gun problem in this country," Josh Geltzer told CNN's Kaitlan Collins on "New Day."

In April, Biden announced new regulations against firearms, specifically homemade ones, amid mounting pressure he faces to take action that will target the national crisis of gun violence.

Second Amendment advocates deny that restricting gun laws will lead to a decrease in mass shootings.

But, after similar tragedies in the UK, Finland, Norway and Australia, widespread changes to gun laws have been implemented, often with dramatic results.

Australia

In one of his first acts as a leader, Prime Minister John Howard announced major reforms to Australia's gun control laws, just 12 days after 35 people were killed by a lone gunman wielding a semi-automatic-style rifle. soldier at a popular tourist spot in Tasmania on April 28, 1996.

This April 29, 1996 photo shows the remains of the Hobart guest house from which a gunman, identified as Martin Bryant, killed 34 people and wounded 19 others. (Credit: WILLIAM WEST/AFP/Getty Images) )

In the wave of public commotion against what came to be known as the Port Arthur massacre, the move to tighten gun controls was led by Howard, who had taken office just seven weeks earlier.

He launched his anti-gun campaign across the country and, at one point, approached a pro-gun rally wearing a bulletproof vest.

He also oversaw a successful gun "buy-back" scheme that took some 650,000 guns out of circulation.

High-caliber rifles and shotguns were banned, licenses were restricted, and remaining firearms were registered to uniform national standards...an achievement that was seen by many in the country as Howard's enduring legacy.

Australia has been compared to the United States for its "Wild West mentality".

But, unlike the United States, there is no constitutional right to bear arms and gun ownership is markedly lower.

In the years after the Port Arthur massacre, the risk of shooting death in Australia fell by more than 50%…and stayed there.

A 2012 study by Andrew Leigh of the Australian National University and Christine Neill of Wilfrid Laurier University also found that in the following decade, the buyback led to a nearly 80% drop in suicide rates by firearms.

United Kingdom

On August 19, 1987, 27-year-old Michael Ryan went on a bloody, hour-long massacre in the southern English town of Hungerford, Berkshire, armed with a pistol, a hand grenade and an automatic rifle, in the one that killed 16 people and injured nearly a dozen more.

Following the Hungerford massacre, Britain introduced new legislation – the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1988 – which made it compulsory to register firearms for ownership and banned semi-automatic and action weapons. pumping.

The UK tightened gun rules after mass shootings in 1987 and 1996.

Nine years later, 43-year-old Thomas Hamilton stormed a school in the town of Dunblane in central Scotland and embarked on a horrific shooting spree that left 16 five- and six-year-old children dead, and Your teacher.

The following year a new law was passed banning private ownership of all small arms in the UK, followed by a highly successful public campaign in the months after Dunblane including a petition delivered to the government with almost 750,000 signatures. .

However, Britain was rocked by another massacre in June 2010, when a lone gunman named Derrick Byrd killed 12 people and wounded nearly 30 others after a four-hour shootout in the countryside. from Cumbria, northern England.

The body of the 52-year-old taxi driver was found next to two powerful rifles, one of them equipped with a telescopic sight.

The tragedy again raised questions about the effectiveness of Britain's gun laws, after it was revealed that Byrd had a license to carry firearms.

The license application process involves being investigated by the police and having the applicant's doctor assess the applicant's fitness to own a weapon.

Finland

On November 7, 2007, a teenager opened fire with a pistol at his secondary school in the southern Finnish city of Tuusula, killing eight people before taking his own life with the same weapon.

Around 69 projectiles and more than 320 unused bullets were found at the scene.

A video of the alleged killer was uploaded to YouTube on November 6, 2007, the day before the Tuusula shooting, where an 18-year-old man killed seven people and injured more than a dozen others.

(Credit: Timo Jaakonaho/AFP/Getty Images)

Police said Auvinen, who had no criminal history, obtained a license for the gun the month before the shooting and regularly practiced target shooting as a hobby at a local shooting range.

The following year, the country was transfixed by the news of another mass shooting.

Over 90 minutes, 10 people were killed when Matti Juhani Saari, wearing a balaclava and black military suit, fired indiscriminately across the campus of the School of Hospitality in the city of Kauhajoki, southwestern Finland.

Following the shootings, the Finnish government issued new guidelines on the use of firearms, especially revolvers and pistols.

New firearms license applicants are now required to prove they have been an active member of a gun club for a year and are vetted by their doctor and police.

The minimum age for licenses for short barreled weapons has been increased to 20 years, while the minimum age for hunting rifles is 18 years.

Permits are now valid for a period of five years before being reviewed.

In 2013, 59,324 gun permits were issued, a 30% decrease from 2007, when 85,409 permits were issued, according to Finnish media.

Norway

July 22, 2011 will remain in the memory of all Norwegians after the massacre of that day.

After detonating a bomb outside the prime minister's office in Oslo, killing eight people, Anders Behring Breivik took a ferry to the island of Utoya and launched a massive shootout that took the lives of 69 people who They had attended a youth camp.

Anders Behring Breivik was accused of being responsible for the Oslo massacre.

He was sentenced to 21 years in prison.

(Credit: ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Authorities said Breivik wandered the island, shooting at campers.

He was later sentenced to 21 years in prison.

Despite the fact that the possession and type of ammunition allowed for use are strictly regulated, an independent report called Norwegian gun controls “inadequate”.

This called for a complete ban on semi-automatic weapons like the ones Breivik bought with relative ease.

Like Finland, Norway has a large number of weapons in circulation as hunting is a national pastime.

According to the "Small Arms Survey 2007: Guns and the City", there are almost 32 firearms per 100 people in Norway, compared to 88.82 per 100 inhabitants in the United States.

With reporting from CNN's Maegan Vazquez, Kate Sullivan and Kevin Liptak 

Second AmendmentMass ShootingsViolence USA

Source: cnnespanol

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