"We have strengthened security in Europe without restricting the freedom of law-abiding citizens in their spare time", said Anna Maria Corazza Bildt MEP today, EPP Group negotiator on the Firearms Directive, commenting on the vote in plenary.

In short, the objective of the review of the Firearms Directive is to ensure that legally-owned firearms do not end up in the wrong hands. It was necessary to revise the Directive to close dangerous loopholes, notably by improving common standards for deactivation, safe storage, increased traceability and better cooperation between national police forces.

"I'm proud that we have managed to remove the parts that were restrictive for hunters and sport shooters. I want to reassure them that they can continue to enjoy their spare time activities", continued Corazza Bildt.

The new Directive fills the gaps in inadequate systems while preserving existing effective firearm legislation.

"We have managed to substantially change the European Commission's proposal and now we call on the Member States to transpose the Directive without adding constraints", stressed the Swedish MEP.

Welcoming the balanced compromise, Andreas Schwab MEP, EPP Group Spokesman in the European Parliament’s Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee, concluded: "More security for all Europeans does not have to mean less freedom for law-abiding citizens."

NOTE TO EDITORS

The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 217 Members from 27 Member States

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