New Zealand's government has introduced a new bill that would ban most semiautomatic firearms in the country.
The Arms (Prohibited Firearms, Magazines, and Parts) Amendment Bill seeks to ban "most semi-automatic firearms, and some shotguns, [...] as well as magazines, and parts that can be used to assemble [said] firearms." If the bill becomes law, anyone who owns the banned items would have until Sept.
30 to surrender them to licensed dealers or police.
To compensate owners, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the government will create a buyback program, which could end up costing more than $100 million.
The bill also includes new penalties for possessing, using or selling the firearms or accessories after the amnesty period is over, which range from two to 10 years in prison.
The bill was introduced a little more than two weeks after a deadly attack on two mosques in Christchurch left at least 50 people dead and dozens more injured.
Police Minister Stuart Nash said the gunman created the military-style weapons used in the attack from legally purchased semiautomatic guns and high-capacity magazines.
Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters said the country's Cabinet approved the bill Monday , and its first reading in the House was set for Tuesday.
If everything goes according to plan, the bill should go into effect on April 12.