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Encyclopedia > Gun politics in Finland
Gun politics
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In Finland there are over two million licensed firearms and an estimated quarter of a million unlicensed firearms. According the Finnish Ministry of the Interior, firearms are present in approximately one-quarter of Finnish homes, with most firearms licensed for hunting. Firearm statistics include signalling pistols, which are very common as boating and yachting are popular sports in the country. The term gun politics refers to the various public policy debates surrounding the freedom or restriction (gun rights versus gun control) of private ownership and usage of firearms, and to what extent such policy influences crime and the balance of power between the individual and the state. ... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Australia. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Brazil. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Canada. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Finland. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Mexico. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_South_Africa. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Switzerland. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_States. ... An assortment of modern handheld firearms using fixed ammunition, including military assault rifles, a sporting shotgun (fourth from bottom), and a tactical shotgun (third from bottom). ...

Contents


Civil reserve

Many active military reservists personally possess pistols, target rifles, shotguns and semi-automatic rifles for practice shooting. This has been passively supported by the government, as it gives the reservists the possibility of practice shooting without the requirement of government spending. A member of the United States Military that spends one weekend a month and two weeks annually training to protect and defend the United States. ... A Browning 9 millimeter semiautomatic pistol Ordnance pistol of the French Navy, 19th century A pistol or handgun is a usually small firearm that can be used with one hand. ... A rifle is a firearm that uses a spiral groove cut into the barrel to spin a projectile (usually a bullet), thus improving accuracy and range of the projectile. ... A pump-action and two semi-automatic action shotguns, 20 boxes of shotgun shells, a target thrower, and three boxes of clay targets. ... A semi-automatic rifle is a type of rifle that, each time the trigger is pulled, fires a single bullet without the need to operate a bolt or other firing or loading mechanism other than the trigger, until the firearms supply of cartridges is depleted. ...


Their actual service weapons are stored by the Finnish Defence Forces, and are only given to them in reservist re-training exercises or during mobilization. At present, a strong political consensus exists that military weapons must not be stored by individuals, even if they are reservists in first-line, quick response units. The Finnish Defence Forces (Finnish Puolustusvoimat; Swedish Försvarsmakten) consist of 34,700 people in uniform (27,300 army, 3,000 navy, and 4,400 air force). ... Mobilization or mobilisation is the act of assembling and making both troops and supplies ready for war. ...


Regulation

The ownership and use of firearms is regulated by the Firearms Act of 1998. 1998 (MCMXCVIII) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year of the Ocean. ...


Firearms can only be obtained with a license, which can be obtained from the local police for €32. A separate license is required for each individual firearm and family members can have a parallel licenses to use the same firearm. According to law, the firearms must be stored in a locked cupboard or with vital parts removed and hidden. They can be carried only when they are transported from their place of storage to the place of use (shooting range, hunting area or such). Even then they must be concealed or kept in carrying pouches. Only security guards with special training and a permit are allowed to carry a gun in public places. The ownership of air-rifles is not regulated but carrying or firing them in public places is not permitted.


To obtain a firearms license, an individual must declare a valid reason to own a gun. Acceptable reasons include: hunting, sports or hobby, profession related, show or promotion or exhibition, collection or museum, souvenir, and signalling. Collectors can have licenses for firearms not permitted to be owned by civilians. This is usually shown by a long gun ownership, but ultimately the issuing of licenses is at the local police's discretion. Conversely, a license for a pistol or a rifle is relatively easy to obtain, requiring only an (often nominal) membership to a marksmanship association, although the police usually require that the first gun is suitable for a beginner.


Possession of destructive devices such as automatic weapons, rocket and grenade launchers, breech loading cannons, artillery rockets, or missile systems is generally not permitted. The Finnish Ministry of the Interior has discretion to license such devices to collectors or for motion picture production or exhibition use. M2 machine gun An automatic firearm is a firearm that will continue to load and fire rounds of ammunition as long as the trigger (or equivalent) is activated or until it runs out of ammunition. ... Rocket launcher is a vague term which could mean various things: a mobile launch platform for an ICBM or cruise missile a launcher for multiple smaller missiles, such as Stalins Organ a shoulder-launched missile weapon This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that... A grenade launcher is a weapon that fires, or launches a grenade. ... A breech-loading weapon, usually a gun or cannon, is one where the bullet or shell is inserted, loaded, into the gun at the rear of the barrel, the breech; the opposite of muzzle-loading. ... Historically, artillery refers to any engine used for the discharge of projectiles during war. ... A missile (CE pronunciation: ; AmE: ) is, in general, a projectile—that is, something thrown or otherwise propelled. ...


The firearms certificate may be cancelled if a person has committed a violent, gun-related, or drug-related crime or has broken certificate rules. Physical and mental problems or reckless behavior are solid grounds for canceling the certificate.


Possessing a firearm without a license is a punishable offence. Unlicensed firearms may be confiscated by the police without punishment, provided this happens under the individual's own initiative. Firearms surrendered in this manner are auctioned to the public or destroyed.


Gun laws were last changed in 1998. At that time flare guns became subject to licensing, and some types of ammunition were specified especially dangerous. Such ammunition requires a separate license. The difficulty of obtaining such a license is dependent upon the nature of the ammunition. For example, it might be relatively easy to obtain hollow-point ammunition for marksmanship practice but a license for live artillery grenades is effectively impossible to obtain. A flare gun is a gun that shoots flares. ...


Related objects

Sound suppressors, a firearm accessory strictly regulated in many other jurisdictions, are also available in Finland. Their use is not regulated. Their use can be considered to reduce the noise pollution that firearms otherwise produce, although this is not a serious problem, since most ranges are located in remote locations. They also remove the need to use hearing protection while shooting. Silencers are not a major topic in Finnish gun control debates as they are almost never used in crimes. The word silencer can mean:- A noise-suppressor on the end of a guns barrel. ...


Private ownership of tear gas or pepper spray is licensed for the purposes of personal protection, collection, training, or education. It must be noted, however that personal protection, education or training are not valid reasons to get a licence for a private person but apply only to security companies. Any usual need for professional use of guns should be covered with incapacitating agents, but for high risk facilities such as nuclear plants, security guards may get a firearm license. A riot control agent is a type of lachrymatory agent (or lacrimatory agent). ... Pepper spray (also known as OC spray (from Oleoresin Capsicum), OC gas, or capsicum spray) is a lachrymatory agent (a chemical compound that irritates the eyes to cause tears, pain, and even temporary blindness) that is used in riot control, crowd control and personal self-defense, including defense against dogs. ... Nuclear power station at Leibstadt, Switzerland. ...


Black powder firearms manufactured prior to 1890 are free to be possessed without regulation, but for firing them one must possess a firearms license. Black powder - here a 100 grams container - can be freely bought in Switzerland. ...


Unregistered firearms

The total number of illegal firearms is impossible to know, according to some estimates, there may be as few as 50 000 or as many as 500 000.


Thanks to changes to the legislation, illegal firearms may now be handed over to the police without punishment for illegal possession of a firearm, provided that the owner of the firearm does it of his own initiative. The firearm is then stored while the owner applies for a permit. If he chooses not to, it will be auctioned, or destroyed if it is deemed dangerous to use due to its condition. Historically valuable weapons are sometimes handed over to museums. This practice is called "mercy year", as it originally started as a one-year experiment, which was very successful. Thousands of illegal firearms and several tons of explosives and ammunition are collected each year. Many, if not most of these items are old "souvenirs" dating back to World War II or even Finnish Civil War.


External links

  • (in Finnish)Finnish gunlaw

  Results from FactBites:
 
Gun politics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2851 words)
Guns are more dangerous to the owners than to intended targets because most gun related deaths are a result of domestic violence, accidents, and suicides.
Guns are of little use as self defense for the typical owner because in incidents where a hostile encounter with an armed criminal occurs, the criminal is often more experienced and skilled with his/her weapon; also, criminals may act in groups.
Gun control laws have a disproportionate effect on the freedoms of the law-abiding as criminals are willing to break the law to acquire, possess, and use guns.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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