New Zealand tightens gun laws further in response to mass shooting

Armed police officers stand guard outside the Christchurch District Court in New Zealand during a hearing against white supremacist Brenton Tarrant, who pleaded guilty to shooting dead 50 Muslims during the March 15, 2019 attack on two mosques. (AFP)
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Updated 18 June 2020

New Zealand tightens gun laws further in response to mass shooting

  • The tougher gun laws will take effect next week
  • New Zealand’s efforts on gun control have gained global praise

WELLINGTON: New Zealand tightened its gun laws on Thursday with a registry that it had promised after a gunman killed 51 Muslim worshippers last year in the country’s worst peace-time mass shooting.
This is New Zealand’s second set of gun reforms in the wake of the Christchurch massacre by a suspected white supremacist who murdered his victims with semi-automatic weapons.
Australian Brenton Tarrant has pleaded guilty over the attack and will be sentenced later this year.
The tougher gun laws will take effect next week following the passage of a bill through Parliament on Thursday.
The most significant change is the new firearms registry which license holders will be required to update as they buy or sell guns.
“The new law is designed to stop firearms falling into the wrong hands. It spells out for the first time that owning a firearm is a privilege, limited to responsible licensed owners,” Minister of Police Stuart Nash said in a statement.
Other changes include prohibiting high-risk firearms like short semi-automatic rifles, tighter rules for gun dealers, and reduced the length of firearms license from 10 to 5 years for first time license holders and those who had their license revoked or allowed it to expire.
The government had near-unanimous support in parliament last year when it passed a law banning military style semi-automatic firearms within weeks of the March 2019 attack.
The second round of changes passed on Thursday faced some resistance, with gun lobbyists and opposition leaders questioning the need for a gun registry.
New Zealand’s efforts on gun control have gained global praise, especially in the United States, where lawmakers in favor of gun control and activists have struggled to address gun violence.


UK’s Prince William, wife Kate join Attenborough after film screening

Updated 27 September 2020

UK’s Prince William, wife Kate join Attenborough after film screening

  • Prince William, who has followed his father Prince Charles in pursuing environmental causes, has previously interviewed Attenborough
  • The photographs showed William and Kate standing in the garden, surrounded by their three children

LONDON: Britain’s royal family have released pictures of Prince William, wife Kate and their three children joining the naturalist David Attenborough in the gardens of Kensington Palace.
The photographs were taken earlier this week after the 94-year-old broadcaster joined Prince William, Queen Elizabeth’s grandson and second-in-line to the throne, to watch an outdoor screening of Attenborough’s upcoming film.


The film, “David Attenborough: A Life On Our Planet,” sets out his “witness statement” on the destruction of the environment and ideas on how humans can still put it right.
Prince William, who has followed his father Prince Charles in pursuing environmental causes, has previously interviewed Attenborough, and the queen presented him with an award for raising awareness of the danger of plastic pollution last year.


The photographs showed William and Kate standing in the garden, surrounded by their three children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, while Attenborough stood at a slight distance, sharing a joke with the family.