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Canadians divided on banning handguns, assault-style firearms: consultation

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OTTAWA — A newly released summary of federal consultations says Canadians have wildly diverging views on banning handguns and assault-style firearms.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau asked Crime Reduction Minister Bill Blair last August to study the possibility of such a ban shortly after a shooting spree in Toronto.

The report released today says opinions expressed during in-person discussions and through written submissions both opposed and supported a ban.

In contrast, most people who responded to a questionnaire were against a ban.

The report says many participants felt strongly that a ban would target law-abiding owners, rather than illicit firearms, and would not reduce gang violence.

As a result, many called for beefing up police and border services, as well as harsher punishments for firearms trafficking and gun-related crime.

The Canadian Press

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