Czechs Hit Back Against EU Crackdown on Legal Gun-Owners: ‘Free Countries Don’t Disarm Their Citizens’

JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty Images
JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty Images

Czech president Miloš Zeman has put his name to a petition opposing an EU diktat which would clamp down on legal gun-owners and backed a constitutional amendment which would guarantee citizens’ right to keep arms for self-defence and protection of the homeland.

The directive on tightening control of firearms under the guise of counter-terrorism was approved by the European Parliament in mid-March, and would see the Czech Republic — which combines comparatively liberal gun rights with low levels of crime and extremely low levels of terrorism — forced to impose new restrictions or face sanctions from Brussels.

Center for Civic Freedoms founder Václav Klaus Jr., son of former president Václav Klaus Sr., complained that the governments of non-democratic and fascist countries disarm their citizens, not free countries.

The petition urges the Czech government and parliament to “reconsider and endorse and approve an amendment to the constitutional law on the security of the Czech Republic, enshrining into our constitutional order the right to legal possession of weapons for defence and internal and external security of our state “, and has already acquired some 170,000 signatures.

President Zeman — a eurosceptic critical of mass migration and a veteran of the Prague Spring uprising against the Soviet puppet government under Communism — has previously called for a European ‘Second Amendment’ along American lines, to deter terrorists.

“The level of international crime is growing because of Islamic terrorism,” he told the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in late 2017.

“I am open and frank, and I do not use the phrase ‘Islamic terrorism’ lightly but, in the overwhelming majority of cases, it has Islamic origin. It is connected with genocide in Armenia.”

President Zeman added: “What can we do against international criminality? Invest in the police, invest in the army, and have the courage to invest in our own guns.

“My wife has a pistol. Of course, she passed all necessary tests, but now I am guarded by my wife, and not only by bodyguards,” he smiled.

“The Second Amendment to the American constitution says that everybody has the right to have a weapon — of course they must fulfil the necessary conditions and tests.

“We Europeans are a little more careful than the Americans, but after Barcelona and many assassinations, I think that the difference between Europeans and Americans is not so great.”

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