Colombia: New local governors launch initiatives for gun control

Several of the newly elected mayors and governors in Colombia who were inaugurated on 1 January have begun their term with the launch of innovative disarmament programmes. In the province of Antioquia and the city Medellín a ban on gun carrying by civilians was extended to the end of 2012. In Bogotá, the mayor succeeded in passing an experimental ban on civilian gun carrying for three months from February 2012, and the governor of Cundinamarca, the province surrounding Bogotá, is seeking to extend this ban to its entire territory. CERAC, an IANSA member in Colombia has been working with media and local authorities over the last months to promote disarmament as part of the new administrations’ strategies for violence reduction. As a result, a host of other initiatives have been announced by different local authorities seeking delegation of the power to regulate gun ownership and carrying, which currently lies with the military authority.