Requests for gun permits in Vienna rising

Requests for gun permits in Vienna rising
File photo: APA
The number of requests for gun permits in Vienna is rising, according to police. There are currently more than 85,000 registered weapons in the capital, although the actual number including those that are not registered is thought to be much higher.

One Viennese tobacconist working in Sechshauserstraße in the Rudolfsheim-Fünfhaus district told the ORF she felt she had to get a gun to protect herself from robbers. Several of her neighbours have been broken into. She does regular target practise at a nearby shooting range.

Last year in Vienna 460 applications for weapons were submitted. However, police are cracking down on gun ownership. “We don’t want to see private armies with weapons. There are many situations in which having a gun can be a great disadvantage. We always recommend leaving any dangerous situation immediately and calling the police," said police spokesman Roman Hahslinger.

One in five weapons applications was withdrawn or dismissed in the past year. The remaining applicants all met the requirements, including completing a period of probationary psychological assessment. However if you fail this test you can complete it several times, until you pass, something Viennese psychologist and consultant Karin Busch-Frankl has criticized.

A Viennese jeweller who shot and killed a man during an armed robbery at his business in Rudolf-Fuenfhaus in July 2013 was judged to have acted in self-defence.

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