Venezuela: Students march for gun control

Several thousand students marched in Caracas, Venezuela on 18 November, in support of programmes proposed by the government to enhance gun control. Two special commissions of the Venezuelan National Assembly are currently debating possible laws and activities to promote civilian disarmament and combat ‘a culture of violence’.  According to media reports, while a licence is required to buy and carry guns, a lack of control by the authorities and widespread corruption often means that guns are diverted from security forces to criminals.  The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reports that around 80% of homicides in Venezuela are committed with a gun.