Leader says tough gun con­trols will tighten

Malta Independent - - WORLD -

Australia’s tough gun con­trols will be fur­ther tight­ened to re­strict ac­cess to new rapid-fire shot­guns, the prime min­is­ter said yes­ter­day.

But a pro-gun in­de­pen­dent sen­a­tor warned Prime Min­is­ter Mal­colm Turn­bull that the move will add to the gov­ern­ment’s dif­fi­culty in get­ting leg­is­la­tion through the Se­nate.

Turn­bull was com­ment­ing on the fate of the Adler A110 shot­gun, a Turk­ish-man­u­fac­tured lever-ac­tion weapon that was banned from im­por­ta­tion last year as an Aus­tralian gun dealer was tak­ing or­ders to sell hun­dreds.

The Adler can fire eight shots as fast as pump-ac­tion shot guns, which are a highly re­stricted cat­e­gory of rapid-fire gun un­der na­tional reg­u­la­tions de­signed to limit the risk of mass shoot­ings.

Cur­rently, lever-ac­tion guns have been listed in the least re­stric­tive gun cat­e­gory since firearm laws were over­hauled 20 years ago in re­sponse to a lone gun­man killing 35 peo­ple in Tas­ma­nia state.

Gun-con­trol ad­vo­cates see that as a le­gal loop­hole that be­came widely known only through the ad­ver­tis­ing sur­round­ing the Adler.

Turn­bull told Par­lia­ment that the Adler ban would re­main un­til state gov­ern­ments agreed on how such shot­guns should be re­clas­si­fied.

“We are not pre­pared to see those guns im­ported into Australia un­der the cur­rent clas­si­fi­ca­tion which they have,” Turn­bull said.

In­de­pen­dent Sen­a­tor David Ley­on­hjelm ac­cused the gov­ern­ment of reneg­ing on a deal with him to lift the im­port ban by Aug. 7.

Ley­on­hjelm, who ar­gues gun laws have ren­dered Aus­tralians “dis­armed vic­tims,” said he agreed to sup­port gov­ern­ment leg­is­la­tion in the Se­nate last year in re­turn for the gov­ern­ment lim­it­ing the Adler ban to 12 months.

But in­stead of al­low­ing the 12-month ban to ex­pire, the gov­ern­ment ex­tended it while the states dis­cuss how to treat the Adler.

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