Russians Increase Purchases of Guns for Self-Defense

July 20, 2009

Paul Goble

As the economic crisis deepens and fears of crime spread, not only are more Russians buying guns of various kinds – including pistols and gas guns -- but many of them are buying more than one, trends that are prompting some Duma deputies to consider repealing existing restrictions on the purchase of hunting rifles for self-defense.

But as could be expected on the basis of the experience of other countries, many of these guns are not used for self-defense but rather in settling personal scores or, the Russian interior ministry says, in the kind of ethnic and group conflicts that have already left many dead and could claim more lives as gun ownership spreads (newizv.ru/news/2009-07-20/112048/).

According to an article in today’s “Novyye izvestiya,