260,000 people applied for gun licenses since October 7th

Ben Gvir has urged the easing of restrictions on gun ownership and fast-tracking those who have already been approved.

By Vered Weiss, World Israel News

Itamar Ben Gvir, National Security Minister, reports that his department has received 260,000 requests to own firearms since October 7th.

The massacre on October 7th pointed to weaknesses in general security measures and engendered in many a desire to take security into their own hands.

Since the crisis, Ben Gvir has urged the easing of restrictions on gun ownership and fast-tracking those who have already been approved.

In the process, Ben Gvir reports he has expanded the number of those who would be eligible for gun licenses “by tens of thousands.”

At an Otzma Yehudit meeting at the Knesset, he said, “When the war started, we knew that we were right when we said that every place that has a weapon can save a life.”

Ben Gvir’s stated policy was to allow as many people as possible to own a gun and gave the National Service Volunteers to process these licenses, even though this permission was unprecedented and objected to by State Control Committee.

Ben Gvir said the State Control Committee “should be embarrassed” and was “harming women” by their objections.

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When the head of the Firearms Licensing Division, Yisrael Avisar, resigned, the National Security Minister said that Avisar left because he was being threatened by “leftists.”

Even before the war, Ben Gvir had been advocating the expansion of gun ownership and the relaxation of licensing rules.

In July, he said that a terror attack in Tel Aviv underscored his stance for broader gun ownership among Israelis after a civilian fatally shot the terrorist who had injured seven people in a violent stabbing and vehicular ramming spree.

Speaking to the civilian who shot the terrorist, Ben-Gvir said: “I wish to commend you; your actions in saving lives mark you as a true hero.”

He continued, “It’s crucial to recognize the importance of armed citizens in safeguarding others. I value you, and I appreciate every citizen who steps in to rescue others.”

Later on Twitter, he wrote: “I call on the public who meet the criteria: carry guns.”