Member of Parliament George Pantophlet Extends Condolences to People of Holland

Member of Parliament George Pantophlet wants to extend his deepest sympathy and condolences to the people of the Netherlands and in particular those who lost relatives and friends on that tragic day when a lone gunman went on a rampage killing innocent people. There are no words that can ease the pain and sorrow that is being experienced at this moment.  

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While some might see it as farfetched one can never discount the possibility of such a tragedy occurring on our island. I concur with the editorial in the daily herald which is true that guns kill. During a central committee meeting of Parliament with the Minister of Justice Roland Duncan discussing an amendment to the gun ordinance to make it easier to obtain a gun license the Member of Parliament had made his objections clear. More access to guns will translate into a greater use of guns. The recent increase in gun related crimes are becoming more and more alarming and fresh in our memory is the young 17 year old Milton Peters College student who was killed recently. In his opinion the Member of Parliament feels that there should be stricter gun controls and intense cooperation between the Dutch and French side authorities. Our borders need to be secured and international cooperation both in expertise and finance is a must. It is said that the United States of America is the highest exporter of weapons (53.4%) along Russia, Great Britain, China and France which comes up to 86.7%. This was mentioned in a report on the market on global arms exports in 2004. The reason I bring this up has to do with the fact that it was stated according to the United Nations 1000 innocent people including children are killed by conventional weapons every year. But still there are no treaty governing the sales of small arms and other conventional weapons such as handguns and so on. On Wednesday the committee of Justice will meet to discuss the plan of approach and the Member of Parliament will make this issue on gun license a serious point of discussion. Again to those of the Netherlands and here on St. Maarten who have lost love ones due to gun related crimes, his deepest sympathy and condolences.