Move by left to strengthen gun control laws in Switzerland
Pacifists and centre-left parties want voters to have the final say on breaking with a long-standing Swiss tradition of storing personal army rifles and pistols at home.
They said they would launch a people's initiative to ban such weapons in households. The announcement came a day after parliament refused to take action over the issue.
Supporters of the ban are expected to launch a bid to collect the necessary signatures for the vote within the next few months.
The House of Representatives on Thursday threw out a proposal by the Social Democrats and the Greens to tighten the gun law, including having a central arms register.
"Firearms are the biggest security risk in the country," said Green parliamentarian Jo Lang, while the Social Democrat, Boris Banga, argued that current regulations on standard issue firearms were outdated.
His party colleague Chantal Galladé added a personal aspect to the debate. "I was 11 when my father committed suicide with an army gun."
Other speakers pointed out the latest case of murder committed with such weapons – a man shot his girlfriend in southeastern Switzerland earlier this week. . . . .