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  • ACRI

Revoke Gun Licenses Issued by Unauthorized Officials

Since the outbreak of the war, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of individuals seeking a license for private firearms. Concurrently, regulations for carrying weapons were distinguished, expanding the scope of those eligible for a private firearm license. The Ministry of National Security even launched a wide campaign to encourage arming. However, while the process of obtaining a firearm has been greatly simplified and accelerated, no changes have been made to establish mechanisms for monitoring firearm holders. In fact, the Ministry of National Security does not maintain any, even minimal, oversight over private firearm holders, but only over organizational weapon bearers. For example, there is no supervision over the obligation to keep a private firearm in a concealed safe. In addition, the licensing process itself does not involve checking with the Ministry of Welfare and the National Insurance Institute regarding the mental state and potential danger of the license applicant (such as a history of domestic violence).

The coalition "Gun Free Kitchen Tables," which includes ACRI, addressed the issue to the head of the Licensing and Supervision Department of Firearms at the Ministry of National Security. In their communications, attorneys Maisa Arshid from the coalition and Attorney Anne Suciu from ACRI requested:

  1. To include in the licensing process a prerequisite for approval from the Ministry of Welfare and National Insurance, and a requirement to present approval for the purchase of an approved safe.

  2. To allocate resources urgently to establish regulations and clear guidelines for monitoring private firearms, to publish them publicly, and to conduct meaningful and effective oversight of private firearm holders, including through inspectors and surprise inspections.

In late November, it was reported by the media and discussed in the State Comptroller Committee that, in order to cope with the significant demand for weapons, the Firearms Division in the Ministry of Homeland Security is expanding. Dozens of unskilled workers have been appointed as "licensing officers" following an extremely accelerated training, including National Service women, Knesset employees, and four employees from the office of Minister Ben Gvir (positions of trust). On November 30, 2023, ACRI sent legal corresspondence (Hebrew) to the Attorney General and to the Head of the Firearms Division in the Ministry of Homeland Security, demanding the annulment of the weapon licenses issued by these officials who were appointed without authority and in an illegal and invalid manner. The Coalition also demanded a complete and proper licensing process by qualified licensing officers in the division. Additionally, we called for an immediate halt to the activities of the new licensing officers until their suitability for the position is examined and comprehensive training is provided.


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