Gun crime summit plan announced

A special summit has taken place today in Downing Street on gun crime in the UK.

Police chiefs, community representatives and politicians will discuss the wave of gun crime sweeping across the UK.

The Downing Street meeting called by Tony Blair comes just days after the latest in a series of gun fatalities in London.

Mr Blair said that the roots of the problem go "very deep" within some families and communities. But areas of otherwise peaceful, law-abiding citizens whose lives are blighted by the "guns and gangs" culture need "help and relief", he said.

Ministers are seeking to bring forward tougher legislation in a bid to curb the gun law on British streets and the Home Secretary John Reid announced a three-point plan following the summit.

The Government will now focus on three main areas for action:
  • Policing - ensuring the police are equipped to tackle gun crime;
  • Powers - giving the police and courts the powers to deal with offenders;
  • Prevention - empowering communities to take action themselves to prevent gun crime and gang culture and offering support to parents to challenge their children's behaviour.
This comprehensive approach draws together the broad range of work currently underway including tough new gun laws, intelligence-driven policing initiatives and community-led projects and will be taken forward by the Home Office Round Table on Guns, Gangs and Knives which is chaired by the Home Secretary.

There have been five fatal shootings in London this month alone.

Three of the victims were teenagers.

Earlier, Tory Leader David Cameron questioned whether a summit can get to grips with the issue of gun crime and blamed a lack of role models on the rise of gang culture.


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