Ot­tawa de­lays im­ple­men­ta­tion of gun-mark­ing reg­u­la­tions

The Globe and Mail (Alberta Edition) - - NEWS - JIM BRONSKILL OT­TAWA

The Trudeau gov­ern­ment is de­lay­ing im­ple­men­ta­tion of firearm-mark­ing reg­u­la­tions in­tended to help police trace guns used in crimes – de­spite a 2015 cam­paign pledge to im­me­di­ately en­act them.

The gov­ern­ment an­nounced Fri­day it will de­fer the reg­u­la­tions, which were slated to come into force June 1, un­til the be­gin­ning of De­cem­ber, 2018.

It said the de­fer­ral will pro­vide time needed to pro­pose amend­ments to the reg­u­la­tions, first drafted in 2004, adding that de­tails would be made avail­able later this month.

The firearms com­mu­nity has long op­posed the reg­u­la­tions and con­tin­ues to “ad­vo­cate against their com­ing into force,” says an in­ter­nal note to Pub­lic Safety Min­is­ter Ralph Goodale, re­cently ob­tained by The Cana­dian Press through the Ac­cess to In­for­ma­tion law.

The reg­u­la­tions would re­quire do­mes­ti­cally man­u­fac­tured firearms to bear the name of the man­u­fac­turer, se­rial num­ber and “Canada” or “CA”, while im­ported guns would have to carry the “Canada” or “CA” des­ig­na­tion along with the last two dig­its of the year of im­port.

The mea­sures would help Canada meet the re­quire­ments of the United Na­tions Firearms Pro­to­col and a con­ven­tion of the Or­ga­ni­za­tion of Amer­i­can States.

“In ad­di­tion to the treaty im­per­a­tives, firearms mark­ings have value for do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional law en­force­ment as they, in con­junc­tion with firearms records, can be used to trace crime guns,” says the memo to Mr. Goodale from deputy min­is­ter Mal­colm Brown.

Mr. Brown’s ul­ti­mate rec­om­men­da­tion to Mr. Goodale on the mark­ings was stripped from the memo be­fore re­lease.

In their elec­tion plat­form, the Lib­er­als said they would “im­me­di­ately” im­ple­ment gun-mark­ing reg­u­la­tions. The party also promised other, longer-term mea­sures aimed at mak­ing it harder for crim­i­nals to get and use hand­guns and as­sault weapons.

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