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Parliamentary questions
20 November 2015
P-014918-15
Question for written answer
to the Commission
Rule 130
Anneli Jäätteenmäki (ALDE)

 Subject:  Revision of the Firearms Directive (91/477/EEC)
 Answer(s) 

In consequence of the terrorist attacks that have taken place in the past year the Commission has decided to propose an amendment to the directive on control of the acquisition and possession of weapons (the Firearms Directive, 91/477/EEC). The Commission's aim is to improve the EU's internal security and prevent terrorist acts.

It is good that the Commission has taken measures seeking to improve the safety of individuals on the EU's territory and prevent weapons from falling into the hands of terrorists.

Among the types of weapon the Commission intends to ban are semi-automatic firearms. The implementation of the Commission's proposed ban would not eliminate criminal activity but would impact in particular on the legal acquisition of weapons.

Finland's national defence is based on reservists actively keeping up their military skills. Various types of military-calibre and semi-automatic pistols and rifles are widely used in firing practice by reservists, thereby promoting the exercise of their independent shooting skills. Implementing the Commission proposal would hinder reservists' opportunities to practise their shooting, which is a soldier's most important basic skill.

The strict and precise gun licensing practice in Finland effectively prevents weapons falling into the hands of criminals.

How does the Commission propose to ensure that the revision of the Weapons Directive concentrates on preventing the illegal trade in firearms, crime and terrorism? How does the Commission propose to ensure that the revision of the Firearms Directive does not make it harder for reservists' associations in Finland to carry out their activities?

Original language of question: FI 
Last updated: 25 November 2015Legal notice