Over 520 unlicensed weapons confiscated after KRG ban on firearms sale: Police
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Security forces seized over 520 unlicensed weapons in the six months following the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) decision to ban the sale of firearms, a police spokesperson announced on Wednesday.
In a bid to curb rising gun violence across the Kurdistan Region, the KRG issued a decree in June 2022 to close down illegal shops selling weapons and confiscate all unlicensed weapons.
More than 520 weapons were confiscated from July to December last year, Karzan Ameer Ghafouri, the spokesperson for the Region’s police, said at a press briefing.
In 2022, the Kurdish region witnessed 183 cases of intentional killings and 32 cases of unintentional murders, said Ghafouri.
The KRG announced last July that centers across the Kurdish provinces will be opened to collect unlicensed weapons. Again, in December, the government renewed calls for citizens to register their unlicensed weapons as soon as possible.
The registration-and-handover process will continue for one year, after which time any seizure of weapons will be in accordance with the laws that govern unlicensed weapons.
The KRG’s decision was warmly welcomed by citizens and observers who hailed the move as a necessary measure to curtail gun violence.