As Uvalde fuels the US gun control debate, Canada moves to ban the sale of handguns

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday announced a new gun control law for his country that would include a national freeze on handguns.

“It will no longer be possible to buy, sell, transfer or import handguns anywhere in Canada once this law goes into effect,” Trudeau said Monday.

The move comes less than a week after the mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, that killed 21 people, including 19 students. The legislation also aims to tackle arms smuggling and trafficking by increasing criminal sanctions and strengthening border security measures.

Another component would have gun licenses revoked for individuals involved in domestic violence or criminal harassment.

“And we will ensure that those deemed a danger to themselves or others must surrender their firearms to authorities,” Trudeau added.

Canada banned more than 1,500 types of military-style assault weapons two years ago and expanded background checks. Along with the new proposed legislation, the Canadian government would also require that long gun magazines be “permanently altered”, never contain more than five rounds, and “prohibit the sale and transfer of large-capacity magazines under the Criminal Code”.

“One Canadian killed at gunpoint is one too many,” Trudeau said. “I have seen only too well the tragic costs that gun violence causes in our communities across the country. Today we are proposing some of the strongest actions in Canadian history to keep guns out of our communities and build a safer future for all.”

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen at a roundtable discussion hosted by Environment and Climate Change Canada May 18, 2022 in Ottawa, Canada.
Chris Jackson/Getty Images

The comprehensive law was rolled out six days after the mass shooting in Uvalde. The shooting sparked renewed calls for gun control across America.

US President Joe Biden called for “common sense gun laws” in a speech hours after the May 24 shooting.

During a press conference Monday morning, Biden was asked if he thinks Republicans will approach gun reform differently now.

“Since I haven’t spoken to them, I don’t know,” Biden told reporters. “But I suppose if so, then they need to take a good look at it. I know there’s no point in buying something that can fire up to 300 rounds. “

President Biden and First Lady Jill Biden visited Uvalde on Sunday. As Biden exited a church, a large crowd chanted “do something.” The president replied, “We will,” reported the Associated Press.

Biden said he “deliberately” avoided a debate with Republicans about gun control measures in Uvalde because the Bidens were “comforting” victims’ families there.

Biden in Uvalde
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden visit a memorial at Robb Elementary School to pay their respects to victims of the mass shooting Sunday, May 29, 2022, in Uvalde, Texas.
Evan Vucci/AP photo As Uvalde fuels the US gun control debate, Canada moves to ban the sale of handguns

Rick Schindler

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