New Zealand To Invest Up To NZ$200 Million Buying Back Guns

21st March 2019

"That is the price that we must pay to ensure the safety of our communities,” said Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

New Zealand has introduced a ban on all types of semi-automatic weapons and assault rifles following the Christchurch mosque attacks, with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern saying she expected new legislation to be in place by 11th April.

"We are announcing a ban on all military style semi-automatics (MSSA) and assault rifles in New Zealand," Ms Ardern said in a news conference, less than a week after 50 people were killed at two mosques by a lone white supremacist gunman.

"Related parts used to convert these guns into MSSAs are also being banned, along with all high-capacity magazines."

As a result, New Zealand is buying back the guns from its arms holders in a move that could cost up to NZ$200 million (€121 million). "That is the price that we must pay to ensure the safety of our communities,” Ms Ardern said.

An amnesty has been imposed so the owners of affected weapons can hand them in. Gun owners have been urged to call police or access their website for instructions, and to avoid turning up at police stations with their weapons.

As with Australia's gun reforms in 1996, exemptions will be made for farmers who need weapons for pest control and animal welfare.

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