Kiwis Protest New Zealand's Gun 'Buy-Back' Scheme: 'The Government Kept Saying They Weren’t Going to Rip Us Off'

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Following the Christchurch mosque shootings where 51 individuals were killed by an Australian man using semi-automatic rifles and shotguns on March 15, 2019, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern amended the country’s gun laws in April to ban most military-style semi-automatics, magazines that hold more than five rounds of ammunition, and gun parts, such as special sights and silencers.

In June 2019, Prime Minister Ardern set aside more than $208 million New Zealand dollars to compensate owners, for up to 95 percent of the original cost, of newly banned firearms in a gun “buy-back” scheme. The deadline for the “buy-back” scheme is set for December 20, 2019.

Despite these efforts to collect military-style semi-automatics and gun parts, there is pushback from Kiwis, causing complications for the gun “buy-back” scheme.

Noting that the government is failing to pay a proper value for the firearms being returned, council spokeswoman Nicole McKee stated, “The Government kept saying they weren’t going to rip us off. They said they would pay full value. They’re not and 250,000 [firearms license holders] are starting to feel ripped off.”