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 PNP sets 6 areas as gun-free zones

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donWACKER

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PostSubject: PNP sets 6 areas as gun-free zones   Sat May 23, 2009 8:27 am

PNP sets 6 areas as gun-free zones
By AARON B. RECUENCO
May 21, 2009, 6:00pm

Manila Bulletin Publishing Corporation
source: http://mb.com.ph/node/201569

The Philippine National Police (PNP) has identified five tourist spots and a Mindanao city as pilot project areas of the gun-free zones it has been pushing as an initial step to turn the country into a gunless society.

Director General Jesus Verzosa, PNP chief, said discussions are still on going on the implementing rules and guidelines once the gun-free zone project is launched in Boracay in Aklan, Panglao in Bohol, Baguio City, Tagaytay City, San Juan town in Batangas, and Zamboanga City.

Verzosa explained that the initial phase of the project only limits the carrying of firearms to the policemen manning the tourist spots and that all civilians, even politicians and VIPs and their bodyguards, will not be allowed to carry any type of firearms inside the gun-free zones.

"There are recommendations to suspend the permit to carry firearms in the tourist areas or the display of firearms by uniformed and non-uniformed personnel will be prohibited para hindi maging alarming sa ating mga tourist to maintain a peaceful community," said Verzosa in an interview in Camp Crame.

But Verzosa said recommendation to ban even policemen from carrying firearms inside the gun-free zones will follow once the initial phase of the project becomes successful based on PNP assessments.

"We are looking at having patrol and traffic policemen on the streets to be not carrying firearms. Yung firearms nandun na lang sa patrol cars nila," he said.

A partial gun ban, however, is already being implemented in Zamboanga City, said Verzosa, adding that they attribute the success of the project in downtown Zamboanga City to the series of neutralizations of threat groups in the area.

Chief Superintendent Ireno Bacolod, director of the Firearms and Explosive Division and concurrent chief of the Civil Security Group, said that the success of the gun-free zone project in the six identified areas would mean setting up of more pilot projects across the country.

"We are actually planning to have one pilot area in every region. The main priorities for this project based on our initial discussions are the tourist destinations in the country," Bacolod told reporters in an interview.

"There will be checkpoints in these gun free zones and civilians have to deposit their firearms," he added.

Aside from popular tourist destinations, Bacolod said they are also eyeing the inclusion of business districts and establishments for the program.

The setting up of gun-free zones is among the measures being mapped out by the PNP to address the proliferation of firearms in the country, following police data revealing that majority of the crime incidents in the country are related to loose firearms.

A data from the World Health Organization also revealed that 97.7 percent of homicide cases in the Philippines is gun-related, placing the country to number 10 among countries with the most number of gun-related deaths around the world.

At present, top police officials admitted that there are an estimated 1.1 milion loose firearms in the country.

But Bacolod said they are yet to discuss the gun-free zone program with the National Police Commission and other government agencies.

He, however, said that they are coordinating with local peace and order councils across the country for the identification of the places which will be turned into gun-free zones.

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PostSubject: Re: PNP sets 6 areas as gun-free zones   Sat May 23, 2009 8:32 am

by: BrassKnuckle

There is something fishy about this summit because orgs like the PPSA, PNSA, AFAD, and ProGun were not invited. Only the Airsoft Alliance (of all people!) were invited, and it was through them that ProGun found out.

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