New York becomes first US state to enact new gun control laws

New York Monday became the first state in the US to take steps to enact tough new laws and confront growing gun violence in schools across the country, by imposing new restrictions on assault weapons.

The state senate voted overwhelmingly in favour of a legislation that seeks to expand a ban on assault weapons and prevent the mentally ill from possessing guns, making it the first state to put in place "toughest, most comprehensive" gun laws in the aftermath of the mass shooting in a Connecticut elementary school.

The state senate passed the NY Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act with a 43 to 18 vote. The bill now goes to the lower house of the state for ratification.

The new gun rules would provide the "toughest, most comprehensive and balanced answer" in the nation to gun violence.

Through this legislation, New York would become the first state in US to completely ban all high-capacity magazines. It also bans any magazine that holds more than seven rounds, instead of the current limit of 10. Emphasis would be laid on those buying weapons and ammunition, with provisions for closely tracking ammunition purchases.

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