Prague, Feb 5 (CTK) – Czech Interior Minister Milan Chovanec (Social Democrats, CSSD) said yesterday he will submit a constitutional bill giving the owners of legally held arms the right to intervene to ensure the country’s security as a deputy’s initiative.
He said in the Duel discussion programme of commercial Prima TV that he will apply this procedure so that the bill can be debated still in the current term of the Chamber of Deputies.
The next general election is scheduled for October.
“We discussed the matter with the prime minister and other government colleagues. Since time is running out fast and the government still has a few months to work, we decided to submit it as a deputy’s proposal,” Chovanec said.
“We want to save time this way so that the bill can be debated in the Chamber of Deputies,” he said.
Chovanec said the proposal has already been signed and that the signatures are now kept by Roman Vana (CSSD), chairman of the security committee of the lower house of parliament.
In addition to CSSD deputies, the proposal has also been signed by lawmakers from the other parties in parliament with the exception of the rightist opposition TOP 09.
The video called “Safe country, or the Wild West?” explains the purpose of the bill.
“People who hold arms legally, who are trained, will become part of the country’s security. They will be involved in it just as the active reserves of the Czech military,” Chovanec says in the video.
“We do not want to raise the number of arms held by people or make access to them easier,” he says and adds that those who will use an arms for other purposes but necessary defence or extreme need will be punished just as they are now.
The bill is to allow people to defend themselves against terrorists, for instance, in lorry attacks, such as they occurred in Nice and Berlin last year.
At such moments, state bodies only have limited opportunities to effectively and quickly prevent fatalities and other damage.
Justice Minister Robert Pelikan (ANO) said previously Chovanec’s proposal is “unbelievably strange and absurd.”
He said a state resorts to such a step at a time when its security measures utterly fail.