Prague, June 2 (CTK) – The Czech Republic has adopted the most critical attitude to the proposed EU directive introducing stricter rules for firearms possession out of all EU countries, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka said during the question time in the Chamber of Deputies on Thursday.
Sobotka refused to estimate the chance that the directive would be rejected.
“The Czech Republic is very likely to express its negative position at the meeting of the council [for justice and home affairs] on June 10,” Sobotka said.
The efforts to mitigate the directive have not been successful and the Dutch modifications are making it even stricter, he added.
“The council approves the proposal by a qualified majority. At the moment, I cannot anticipate the outcome of the vote,” Sobotka said.
Sobotka said negative attitudes to the directive were also expressed by Slovakia, Poland, Austria and Switzerland.
Stricter rules for firearms possession are advocated by Croatia, France, Italy, Portugal, Spain and Sweden.
Sobotka repeated that the proposal presented under the pretext of fight against terrorism would bring about a ban on hundreds of thousands of guns in the Czech Republic.
This is due to the prepared qualification of most semi-automatic rifles as banned arms. The demand that the banned guns in collections and museums should be made harmless has also been criticised.
The proposed EU directive has been rejected by the government, the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate arguing that terrorists commit their acts by illegal, not legally held arms.
An analysis of the Interior Ministry has said the regulations can pose a risk to the Czech Republic’s internal security and would cause the loss of thousands of jobs.