Canada is banning assault weapons, following the deadliest mass shooting in the country’s history.
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“These weapons were designed for one purpose and one purpose only: to kill the largest number of people in the shortest amount of time,” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said. “There is no use and no place for such weapons in Canada.”
The new policy forbids the use, purchase, sale, transportation, and import of 1,500 different assault weapon models.
“Their families deserve more than thoughts and prayers,” Trudeau continued “Canadians deserve more than thoughts and prayers.”
22 people were murdered in Nova Scotia on April 18 and 19 by a gunman equipped with semi-automatic rifles and handguns.
Opponents of the decision cite the illegality of means by which weapons used in mass shootings are acquired. Andrew Scheer, the leader of the Conservative Party, reacted in a statement, explaining his position that this will not stop criminals from accessing guns: “Taking firearms away from law-abiding citizens does nothing to stop dangerous criminals who obtain their guns illegally. The reality is, the vast majority of gun crimes are committed with illegally obtained firearms.”
Politico reports that over 72,000 gun-owning Canadians will be affected by the new assault weapon policy.