Senator Mario Bergara, promoter of the initiative, stated that 1,2 million firearms circulate in the country, half of them legally and the other illegal, which places the country in fifth place in possession of weapons in civil society worldwide.
“We clearly see difficulties for the comptroller, the monitoring of the possession of weapons and I constantly receive news of tragedies that many of them have to do with access to firearms,” the senator emphasized to the press. “(…) two out of three robberies are conducted using firearms and there are tragedies in the family sphere that have to do with access to firearms.”
Ten violent deaths were registered only during the last weekend, one of the victims was a 12-year-old boy who was murdered by his father in the department of Artigas, Bergara said.
Teacher unions and relatives of students demanded protection due to a stray bullet that resulted from a shootout between gangs linked to drug trafficking in neighborhoods, as well as criminals entering schools to rob schoolchildren.
The bill aims at reducing the possession of weapons from five to three years, restricting the number of firearms a person can have and seizing the weapon should complaints of gender violence be received, among other limitations. It also aims at creating new punitive measures regarding the omission to report theft or loss, and the omission to adopt the necessary precautions against the access of minors or disabled persons to the weapon, which up to this moment is punishable by a fine.