Mayor of Montreal Valerie Plante welcomes Trudeau gun comments

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Mayor Valerie Plante said Mayor Gregor Robertson has set a goal of 30% fewer shootings by 2020

The Canadian mayor of Montreal says she’s encouraged by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s comments on gun violence.

But she says the pledge of action is more important than the wording of the announcement.

Mr Trudeau had said Montreal and Toronto should be allowed to run pilot programs on getting rid of handguns and assault weapons.

Violent crime had increased in both cities, according to police.

Both cities have struggled with gang violence, particularly in their downtown areas, so that prompted Mr Trudeau to call on the provinces to back pilot projects to curb gun violence.

In November, Montreal experienced a year-long shooting rampage, during which five people were killed and 16 wounded, and Toronto was hit by a dozen fatal shootings last summer.

Montreal Mayor Valerie Plante welcomed Mr Trudeau’s comments, telling reporters in Ottawa that Mr Trudeau’s statement is a “step in the right direction”.

“I was very much pleased with his words because there is a lot of conversation that needs to be had about legalizing all guns across the country,” she said.

On 7 May, Mr Trudeau’s office said he would support Quebec’s call for the provinces and territories to approve pilot projects on getting rid of high-capacity ammunition magazines.

He later gave an unspecific commitment that there would be new measures by “2020”.

Mr Trudeau has repeatedly stated his government wants to legalize weapons, and has said the time to pursue this will be the next three years, after the current federal election campaign is over.

Nevertheless, he has expressed doubts about there being sufficient support from all the provinces for any gun reform.

Mr Trudeau’s comments on the issue could trigger the need for another election campaign in Quebec, where Mr Trudeau is struggling to win a majority of seats in the national Parliament.

As a result, Conservative leader Andrew Scheer, who is seeking to form a minority government, has said he wants to break the current Liberal government.

Leave a Comment