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Limit number of guns per person, says SNP

Scotland already faces the prospect of harsh airgun licensing.

Justice secretary Kenny MacAskill?s statement followed the publication of figures showing gun ownership in Scotland had reached a 10-year high despite the number of shotgun and firearms certificates falling.

He said: ?It concerns me that gun owners, even those with a legitimate need for such weapons, can accumulate multiple firearms and that there is no apparent limit to what can be held.?

?It is one of the areas where the Scottish Government would, if given the proper powers over firearms in Scotland, aim to legislate to ensure that we can better control the number of lethal weapons in society and thereby help to protect and reassure the Scottish public.?

Scots already face the prospect of airgun licensing.

In May, Mr MacAskill said that legislation to regulate the ownership and use of airguns ?would be brought forward at the earliest possible opportunity.?

The Scottish Countryside Alliance described the justice secretary?s latest statement as ?ill-timed and misinformed?

A spokesman said: ?We are opposed to the fragmentation of firearms legislation in the UK, primarily because of the many people from Scotland who shoot in England, and those from England who shoot here.

?The UK?s gun laws are some of the strictest in the world and place a heavy burden on the certificate holder to ensure that they are used and stored safely and securely.?

?If we have different standards on either side of the Border, it could lead to problems for those travelling to Scotland for sport, which, as the justice secretary should recognise, provides a huge boost to rural communities.?

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