Finnish Implementation proposal has been published, and it seems that the Finnish authorities have overshot their mandate.
Authorities were given strict instructions to only modify the Finnish firearms legislation to only add the mandatory parts required by the directive. The task force, consisting mainly of representatives of the Police and ministry of interior have now taken extra liberties, implementing the wet dream of authorities using the directive as an excuse.
These include, but are not limited to:
– Mandatory requirement to proof the need to have firearm every 5 years
– Extremely limited exception for the reservists, which requires 24 month trial period using military training associations firearms, a recommendation from the Finnish military, a certain role in the military reserve etc, basically disqualifying about 99% of female population, everyone over 60 and so on.
– Ban to shoot firearms which are part of the collection. This interpretation came from a mistake in directive translation
– 24 month «trial period» before being allowed to buy A-category firearm for sportshooting, even though directive only requires 12 month
– The trial period has been a pre-existing condition for short firearms, but new shooters have been able to start the hobby by using firearms owned by the sport shooting clubs. This will not be allowed to continue, and as a result, sport shootings slow and painful death slide has started leading to shooting sports withering away in a decade or two. This, by the way is not required by directive either.
These just the most blatant errors of implementation. While the Finnish authorities have been busy while trying to please their overlords in Brussels, the Finnish minister of interior has been put into a sticky situation and has been spending time in the media explaining why the law should be interpreted in a completely different way as it has been written. As a result, he has pretty much zero credibility left among about 700 000 firearms owners in Finland, who actively vote and also follow closely the implementation of the directive. It does not help much, that he issued a gag order to other members of the parliament, who now refer to his blog in their «autoreplies» to emails sent by the concerned firearms owners.
The stakeholders have been heard. That is true. But it seems that nobody listened.
Stay tuned. EU Gunban – Coming soon to your country as well.