“In Germany, you have to have a good reason for owning a gun, like if you’re a sport shooter, hunter or in rare cases, a gun collector,” Oregon Public Broadcasting wrote. “You can’t buy a firearm simply for personal protection—self-defense doesn’t count as a necessity here.”
New police research data confirmed Germans feel increasingly unsafe in the wake of recent lone-wolf attacks, and their fear is driving the demand for non-lethal self-defense weapons.
“As of June 2016, there were 402,301 small arms carry permits in the National Weapons Register,” the Interior Ministry said.
The first half of 2015 recorded slightly less than 270,000 requests for permits – that’s an almost 50% jump in permit applications.
Germany’s small arms carry permits or “Kleiner Waffenschein” are restricted to non-lethal self-defense weapons like as blank-firing, gas pistols, and flare guns.
But in a country with one of the strictest weapons laws in Europe, there are still people who see a need for more gun laws for it’s citizens. Irene Mihalic, the internal expert of the Greens parliamentary group, is pushing to require the license to carry on all gun purchases. “We deem it necessary that also for the acquisition of irritant weapons the presentation of small firearms certificate is required”, the former police officer told “Welt am Sonntag“.
Currently, Germans are only required to show proof of age to purchase and possess weapons are free, but those who wish to carry those weapons are required to obtain a “small arms license” to do so.