23 Feb 2016 – An EU press release published today shows a remarkable about-turn on the EU gun ban plan, possibly suggesting that public opinion is having an impact on Eurocrats’ proposals.
The opening paragraphs of the press release read:
Concerns about the impact that a revised EU firearms directive could have on legal owners of guns in the EU, such as sport shooters, hunters, collectors and museums, were voiced by most MEPs in Internal Market Committee’s kick-off debate on the proposal on Tuesday. The draft revision was proposed by the EU Commission after the 13 November 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris.
MEPs said that the changes they will table to the Commission’s text will aim to make it clearer and to ensure that the revision is proportionate. While some MEPs pointed out that terrorists do not usually acquire weapons via legal channels, many recognised that an update could usefully close loopholes in the current firearms directive.
For Internal Market Committee chair Vicky Ford (ECR, UK), who will steer the legislation through Parliament, the Commission’s proposal “is poorly drafted” and “needs a lot of work”. She regretted the lack of an impact assessment and cited concerns expressed to MEPs by legal owners. “The Commission is no longer in the driver’s seat of this proposal”, she said, stressing that Members of the European Parliament and the EU Council of Ministers will now co-decide on the draft law.
The full thing can be read on the EU website.