In wake of New Zealand attack, experts say mass shootings can spur stricter gun control

In wake of New Zealand attack, experts say mass shootings can spur stricter gun control

With New Zealand indicating a willingness to tighten gun control in the wake of Friday’s mass shooting at two mosques in Christchurch, experts in Cana

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With New Zealand indicating a willingness to tighten gun control in the wake of Friday’s mass shooting at two mosques in Christchurch, experts in Canada say these sorts of violent tragedies have previously spurred changes in gun control policy — but it’s not something to be taken for granted.Fifty people died after a gunman, alleged to be Australian white supremacist Brenton Tarrant, stormed two mosques in Christchurch in what New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described as an act of terrorism.Story continues below

In the wake of the attack, Ardern pledged to look into gun law reform in New Zealand, which has long enjoyed a reputation as a safe country despite relaxed gun control laws and a high rate of private firearm ownership.READ MORE: Christchurch shootings killed more people than 6 years of New Zealand gun homicides combined, stats showNew Zealand doesn’t have to look too far beyond its borders for an example of a country that changed gun control laws following a mass shooting.After 35 people lost their lives in a shooting at Port Arthur in the Australian state of Tasmania, authorities in that country oversaw a fundamental overhaul of gun control laws. Australia hasn’t witnessed a mass shooting since.“What [Australia] did was basically banned semi-automatic guns and handguns,” said Irvin Waller, professor of criminology at the University of Ottawa. “I would imagine that New Zealand will look at the Australian experience and it will actually propose what is already legislation in Australia.”WATCH: Survivor of New Zealand mosque shooting recounts confronting suspect, chasing him

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