Response to Maltatoday article titled “130,000 firearms in Malta (and two rocket launchers)”

Reference is being made to the article “130,000 firearms in Malta (and two rocket launchers)” published in Malta Today on the 15 May 2020, by Paul Cocks.

As the Association of Arms Collectors and Target Shooters, which forms part of the Federation of Arms Collectors and Target Shooters, we would like to point out that there are a number of inaccuracies in the article which tend to shed a negative light on the collection of firearms and the use of firearms for sporting purposes.  The inconsistencies in the article have already been highlighted in detail by one of our sister associations (AMACS), so we are not going to repeat what has already been correctly stated. AMACS and AACTS have been working together over the past years to promote firearms collecting and target shooting in Malta and have also sent members overseas to participate in regional and international sporting events.

Good journalism is based on writing a good story which needs to be based on facts to be credible. Unfortunately, many have attempted to use the Media to give a bad name to firearms, trying to associate them to death and destruction, and moving away fully from the fact that a firearm is simply a tool placed in the hands of a responsible individual, when both the firearm and individual are properly and adequately licensed. The idea behind the reasoning that, “because there are more firearms, there will be more crime” is an absolute fallacy and this has been proven also statistically.  Mr. Cocks correctly states that the firearms he is writing about are licensed.  Unlicensed firearms are illegal, and these are the ones which normally end up in the hands of criminals who chose to use them as weapons.

To reiterate what has already been stated in response to this article, Malta has one of the most secure and functional firearms law in Europe which permits sports shooters to practice their sports safely and collectors to preserve some of the historical artifacts which form part of the military and policing history of this country. We encourage more people to participate in events organised by our Associations and Federation.

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