Six days after New Zealand suffered the worst mass murder in its history, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced Thursday her government will crack down on weapons of mass murder like those used by a white supremacist gunman in attacks at two mosques in Christchurch that left 50 people dead and four dozen others injured.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern: “Today I am announcing that New Zealand will ban all military-style semiautomatic weapons. We will also ban all assault rifles. We will ban all high-capacity magazines. We will ban all parts with the ability to convert semiautomatic or any other type of firearm into a military-style semiautomatic weapon.”
The ban will take effect immediately to prevent buyers from hoarding outlawed firearms. Ardern said her government would launch a buyback program to allow gun owners to surrender weapons for cash. The announcement came as funerals continued for victims of the March 15 assault. On Thursday, mourners buried 14-year-old Sayyad Ahmad Milne and 24-year-old Tariq Rashid Omar at Christchurch’s Memorial Park Cemetery.