BRUSSELS, November 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --
European Parliament, Brussels, 16 Nov 2016
Over 200 stakeholders attending the FIREARMS UNITED conference hosted by political groups EPP, ECR and ALDE supported the speakers' calls for the outright rejection of the EC proposal.
Prompted by the EC's failure to produce an impact assessment, FU founder Katja Triebel tabled her own study and laid bare the EC's inaccurate statistics and wrong conclusions. Sport shooters' and firearm collectors' representatives emphasized the negative impact that the proposal would have on their legitimate activity and on heritage. Expressing their own misgivings, co-chairs Stefano Maullu (EPP), Bernd Kölmel (ECR), Jussi Halla-Aho (ECR) and Dita Charanzova (ALDE) vowed to protect legal owners.
The EC's ill-conceived proposal has stirred up anti-EU sentiment among over 200 million legal firearm owners, further adding to the EU's waning popularity in Member States and the Schengen area in general. A speaker who is a deputy in the Swiss Federal parliament stated that his countrymen who live in a country that has one of the world's highest firearm ownership figures and the lowest violent crime rates, will not accept the imposition of additional EU firearm rules. Failing a parliamentary vote to reject the proposal, a binding referendum with a "Swixit" result is highly likely.
"The European Commission is pushing to introduce their Directive despite all available data showing conclusively that it will achieve nothing in terms of combating terrorism, lowering the homicide rate or preventing massacres. In reality it will just serve to alienate law-abiding citizens even further and divert important resources away from the fight against illegal arms trafficking," concluded Tomasz Stepień, President of Firearms United.