The EU-decision making process is a complex one. Firearms United has been following the EU legislation process up close and personal since the day ill-conceived proposal from the commission saw the light of day, and based on what we have seen, Otto von Bismarck was right when he (allegedly) said: “Laws are like sausages, it is better not to see them being made.“
The “Trilogue” is still ongoing and we are now in the phase called: “First Reading”
That is where in a nutshell The European Parliament examines the Commission’s proposal and may:
- adopt it or
- introduce amendments to it
After that the Council may:
- decide to accept the Parliament’s position: in such a case the legislative act is adopted
- amend the Parliament’s position: the proposal is returned to the Parliament for a second reading
What ACTUALLY really happened so far was that in council France, Germany, Italy and Spain did some shady dealing in backstage and sent a veiled threat in the letter and thus heavily dictated the Council position to which some improvements were pushed in by some countries (FI, CZ, etc).
During that time, the parliament examined the proposal, noticed that it was “unworkable” (We have to agree with the rapporteurs on this one!). Some 900 or so amendmends were made, some voted in – some left out – but in the end we had parliament position. In the trilogue meetings during autumn, a compromise – which we described and published earlier – was reached.
This brings us to present day – The key parts of the proposal are still unfinished (the ones that got this mess started in the first place – deactivation rules) and the parliament is due to vote on the proposal in March – over month before the new deactivation rule proposal is even returning from comments round.
Now two things may happen – either proposal is approved or amended, which brings us to
We really do our best to provide you with verifiable and correct information, unfortunately due to a manipulation error we posted something we shouldn’t have. Let us explain what happened. A few weeks ago there was a news article in a Polish newspaper which stated that the website of Firearms United was blocked on the network of the European parliament. So a draft article/translation was made so we could within Firearms United check the claims properly before publishing it. Unfortunately at some point the wrong button was pressed and this got published without us realizing this immediately.
Just to be clear our website is NOT blocked in the European parliament or the European Commission, and thus MEP’s do have full access to the information provided by us.
Rest assured that we do everything possible to provide you with correct information, and therefore we are deeply sorry a mistake happened. We would thus like to apologize for any misunderstandings.
Your team of Firearms United
Tomorrow between 10:00 and 12:30 the comittee IMCO will vote on the compromise of the trilogue. We assume there will be a short debate before the vote – as usual.
Again – as in summer 2016 – the Member of IMCO have only an English text to vote on. Again – as in summer 2016 – the paper has been published only some days (20/01/17) before the vote. And we assume – as in summer2016 – the majority will agree to the compromise.
You can see more here: Link to IMCO
You may follow the vote on webstream: LINK
FIREARMS UNITED worked on the compromise the last weeks, visited MEPs in Brussels and our staff is in contacts with several MEPs by email and telephone.
We concentrate our work on these six points:
- Collectors, museum & firearms of interest
- Loading devices & re-categorization of semi-automatic rifles
- Long firearms with folding or removable stocks
- Automatic firearms converted to semi-automatic
- The Sport Shooters’ exemption & Firearms Pass
- Retaining category “D” for 3 groups of firearms
Of course there is no evidence at all to amend the directive. Of course the only rational decision should be rejection of the proposal as well as of the compromise. But as Vicky Ford and Jussi Halla-Aho stated on our conference in November: there is no majority for rejection, most politicians are not interested in this subject and want “to do something against terrorism”. As most politicians do not own guns and don’t know gun owners it is easy for them to ban things they do not “need”.
FIREARMS UNITED will do its very best to change the point of view of the uninterested politicians with facts. “To do something” against legal gun owners is not the best solution in the combat against illicit trafficking of firearms and against terrorism and crime.
You may support our fight by calling the local offices of your MEPs by phone. You can use our impact assessment for arguments. We sent the short version by letter to all MEPs in November.
Be polite! We are not the “aggressive gunlobby” but law abiding citizens who will vote.
Since there’s much misunderstanding, especially in foreign media, about meaning and purpose of recently proposed change of our Constitutional law to introduce citizens’ right to acquire, possess and carry firearms, I feel appropriate to correct these misinterpretations.
LEX answers the following questions:
- Is it a “terrorist hunting permit”?
- Is it a proposal for unlimited possession and carrying of firearms?
- Are Czechs going to substitute their armed forces with armed citizens?
- Do Czech people want to establish private armies?
The Conference organized by FESAC, AACTS, AMACS and Firearms United in Malta has attracted media attention – in addition to hall full of firearms enthusiasts and foreign guests from many organizations in Europe!
Nothing in the directive is yet settled, and even the trilogue is still formally ongoing before the parliament approves the current “compromise”. Malta is in key position, because they are taking over EU presidency for the next six months and one of the more challenging areas is the new firearms directive proposal, so the conference was an excellent event, where the message from the shooters was sent to the authorities – loud and clear.
The Maltese organizations spared no effort or expense setting up the conference on saturday, and as you can see from the pictures, they had even organized an exhibit where they showed priceless historical artifacts that were originally sentenced to be destroyed by the commission.
EU Observer publishes the most biased article about the EU Gunban that we have read in the last week: EU reaches deal on contested gun laws by NIKOLAJ NIELSEN (20/12/2016)
You are invited to read our point-by-point reply to this diatribe:
Much of the debate has been overshadowed by intense lobbying from pro-gun groups. They argue that current rules are good enough and that the problem is that some EU states are not applying them.
Pro-gun groups get not paid by the “gun lobby”. They work unsalaried for their own interest.
The choice of words is purposely intended to project us a “sinister and wealthy gun lobby” with the financial power to influence law makers. In realty FIREARMS UNITED and its partners are non-profit making organisations and their administrators are volunteers who contribute their time and energy to campaign for the interests of their members. This process is a vital process in a democracy:
“Lobbying is an integral part of a healthy democracy, closely related to universal values such as freedom of speech and the right to petition of government. It allows for various interest groups to present their views on public decisions that may come to affect them. It also has the potential to enhance the quality of decision-making by providing channels for the input of expertise on increasingly technical issues to legislators and decisionmakers.” (Burson Marsteller, A Guide to Effective Lobbying in Europe: The View of Policymakers, 2013).
FR | IT
From our partner GUNSWEEK.com by Pierangelo Tendas – 21.12.2016
- Press release of the European Commission
- European Parliament and “aggressive gun lobby” watered down the proposal
- Update 25.01.2017: Trilogue’s outcome now published: LINK
- Next steps by EU in February and March
- Letter of FIREARMS UNITED to Frans Timmermans, First Vice President of COM
- Next steps by FIREARMS UNITED
A press release of the European Commission announced the end of the trilogue concerning the amendment proposal to the European firearms directive – now infamously known as the “EU Gun Ban”
The final outcome of the dossier will be decided at the European Parliament in February and March
With a press release launched yesterday, December 20th, the European Commission announced the conclusion of the trilogue concerning the amendment proposals to the European firearms directive – a dossier now infamously known, and aptly so, as the EU Gun Ban.
First introduced by the European Commission in November 2015, after the bloody terror attacks in Paris, the dossier originally included draconian restrictions aimed at law-abiding, legal gun owners, which included a full ban on high capacity fixed or detachable magazines for all firearms, a total ban on private ownership of modern hunting and sporting guns aesthetically and only partially technically patterned after modern military firearms, and many more.
DE | FR | IT
Thanks to all our supporters!
Since 7th June 2016 we recieved more than 100.000 €.
From this total we already paid expenses of 23.487,61 € for travel costs, press releases, advertisments and letters, as well as for paypal fees of 1.616.73 €. The balance of 15.12.2016 was 81.835,13 €,
We still have to pay for outstanding expenses of the Firearms Directive Conference in November and some other expenses.
The “Founding Fathers (and Mother)” decided together with the whole working team to spend during the next three months huge sums for professional help, national conferences, TV, advertisements et all to get our topic and our concerns into the public and to the people in power. We also work on complains and lawsuits in our backrooms.
Those who know advertising’s cost can verify that 80.000 € is not enough for our plans.
So we ask YOU to share our memes in all your social media networks.
We recieved today the information, that Vicky Ford has sent a letter to MEPs. We copied this letter from here and asked our sources for verification. It is confirmed that rapporteur Vicky Ford wrote the letter. She tweeted that she is moving towards an agreement that is close to the Parliament position, which however would move IPSC guns to Cat. A
Only Dita Charanzova (ALDE) is not enthusiastic.
We do not approve, neither:
Here the letter