New York gets tough over gun control

New York state politicians have agreed the first and toughest gun control laws in the nation.

The landmark legislation is a crackdown on assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines and includes measures to keep the mentally ill from guns.

The bipartisan effort was fuelled by the Newtown tragedy that took the lives of 20 first grade pupils and six school staff.

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President Barack Obama has endorsed the clampdown on weapons.

Bronx Democrat Senator Jeffrey Klein said: “This is not about taking anyone’s rights away. It’s about a safe society.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo made gun control a centrepiece to his progressive agenda in his State of the State address last week.

The measure passed the state Senate 43-18 early yesterday and the Assembly planned to take the issue up later the same day. It was expected to pass easily.

Politicians in New York state pressed ahead with their proposals despite the opposition of pro-gun campaign groups.