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Greece — Gun Facts, Figures and the Law

StockpilesGun Numbers

Civilian Guns

Number of Privately Owned Firearms

The estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in Greece is 2,500,0001

Rate of Civilian Firearm Possession per 100 Population

The estimated rate of private gun ownership (both licit and illicit) per 100 people in Greece is 22.51

Number of Privately Owned Handguns

In Greece, the number of handguns in civilian possession is reported to be 5,0002

Number of Privately Owned Firearms - World Ranking

In a 2007 comparison of the number of privately owned guns in 178 countries, Greece ranked at No. 313

Rate of Privately Owned Firearms per 100 Population - World Ranking

In a 2007 comparison of the rate of private gun ownership in 178 countries, Greece ranked at No. 231

Proportion of Households with Firearms

In Greece, the percentage of households with one or more guns is reported to be

2005: 20.6%4

Proportion of Households with Handguns

In Greece, the percentage of households with one or more handguns is reported to be

2005: 1.4%4

Number of Licensed Firearm Owners

The number of licensed gun owners in Greece is reported to be 3,1802

Rate of Licensed Firearm Owners per 100 Population

The rate of licensed firearm owners per 100 people in Greece is 0.035

Number of Registered Firearms

The number of registered guns in Greece is reported to be 100,0001

Rate of Registered Firearms per 100 Population

The rate of registered guns per 100 people in Greece is 0.945

Government Guns

Number of Military Firearms

The defence forces of Greece are reported to have 1,532,5006 firearms

Number of Law Enforcement Firearms

Police in Greece are reported to have 38,9387 firearms

ImpactsDeath and Injury

Total Number of Gun Deaths

ChartIn Greece, annual deaths resulting from firearms total

2012: 1848 9 10
2011: 164
2010: 165
2009: 185
2008: 180
2007: 165
2006: 142
2005: 163
2004: 149
2003: 166
2002: 177
1999: 195
1998: 194

Rate of All Gun Deaths per 100,000 People

ChartIn Greece, the annual rate of all gun deaths per 100,000 population is

2012: 1.715
2011: 1.52
2010: 1.53
2009: 1.72
2008: 1.68
2007: 1.54
2006: 1.33
2005: 1.53
2004: 1.40
2003: 1.56
2002: 1.67
1999: 1.85
1998: 1.84

Homicides (any method)

ChartIn Greece, annual homicides by any means total

2011: 18411 12
2010: 179
2009: 144
2008: 139
2007: 128
2006: 11011 12 13
2005: 132
2004: 11111 12
2003: 122
2002: 94
2001: 132
2000: 8111 12 14
1999: 15512 14
1998: 176
1997: 20312 15
1996: 169
1995: 151

Rate of Homicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn Greece, the annual rate of homicide by any means per 100,000 population is

2011: 1.711 12
2010: 1.6
2009: 1.3
2008: 1.3
2007: 1.2
2006: 1.011 12 13
2005: 1.2
2004: 1.011 12
2003: 1.1
2002: 0.9
2001: 1.2
2000: 0.711 12 14
1999: 1.412 14
1998: 1.6
1997: 1.912
1996: 1.6
1995: 1.4
1994: 1.1416

Gun Homicides

ChartIn Greece, annual firearm homicides total

2012: 578
2011: 60
2010: 58
2009: 67
2008: 62
2007: 62
2006: 348 12
2005: 508
2004: 41
2003: 51
2002: 33
2001: 46
2000: 61
1999: 64
1998: 74

Rate of Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Greece, the annual rate of firearm homicide per 100,000 population is

2012: 0.518
2011: 0.53
2010: 0.51
2009: 0.59
2008: 0.55
2007: 0.55
2006: 0.318 12
2005: 0.458
2004: 0.37
2003: 0.46
2002: 0.30
2001: 0.42
2000: 0.56
1999: 0.59
1998: 0.68
1994: 0.5917

Proportion of Homicides Committed With a Gun

In Greece, the percentage of homicides committed with a firearm is reported to be

2006: 34.9%12

Suicides (any method)

In Greece, annual suicides by any means total

1998: 40318

Rate of Suicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn Greece, the annual rate of suicide by any means per 100,000 population is

1998: 3.6718
1994: 3.4019

Gun Suicides

ChartIn Greece, annual firearm suicides total

2012: 1179
2011: 97
2010: 97
2009: 109
2008: 99
2007: 92
2006: 95
2005: 98
2004: 91
2003: 97
2002: 82
2001: 59
2000: 96
1999: 92
1998: 86

Rate of Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Greece, the annual rate of firearm suicide per 100,000 population is

2012: 1.059
2011: 0.86
2010: 0.86
2009: 0.97
2008: 0.88
2007: 0.82
2006: 0.85
2005: 0.88
2004: 0.82
2003: 0.88
2002: 0.75
2001: 0.54
2000: 0.88
1999: 0.85
1998: 0.79
1994: 0.8420

Unintentional Gun Deaths

ChartIn Greece, annual unintentional shooting deaths total

2012: 1010
2011: 7
2010: 10
2009: 9
2008: 19
2007: 11
2006: 13
2005: 15
2004: 17
2003: 18
2002: 62
2001: 53
2000: 45
1999: 39
1998: 34

Rate of Unintentional Gun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn Greece, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death per 100,000 population is

2012: 0.0910
2011: 0.06
2010: 0.09
2009: 0.08
2008: 0.17
2007: 0.1
2006: 0.12
2005: 0.14
2004: 0.15
2003: 0.16
2002: 0.56
2001: 0.48
2000: 0.41
1999: 0.36
1998: 0.31
1994: 0.0421

Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

In Greece, annual shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total

1998: 018

Rate of Gun Death from Undetermined Cause per 100,000 People

ChartIn Greece, the annual rate of unknown-cause shooting deaths per 100,000 population is

1998: 0.0018
1994: 0.0322

ProductionGun Industry

Regulation of Firearm Makers

In Greece, the manufacture of small arms, ammunition and/or their components is permitted only if the maker holds a valid licence23

Small Arms Manufacture - World Ranking

In a classification of the world's small, medium and major firearm manufacturers, Greece was ranked 'small'24

TransfersGun Trade and Trafficking

Firearm Exports

In Greece, firearm and ammunition exports are limited by transfer control law25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32

Small Arms Exports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition exports from Greece is reported by Customs to be US$16,298,76533 (2011)

Small Arms Exports - World Ranking

In a comparison of the world's major/mid-level/minor/unknown small arms exporters, Greece was categorized as 'unknown'34

Firearm Imports

In Greece, firearm and ammunition imports are limited by transfer control law25 26 27 28 29 30 31

Small Arms Imports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition imports to Greece is reported by Customs to be US$11,299,58633 (2011)35 36 37 38

Smuggling Guns and Ammunition

Reports suggest that the level of firearm and ammunition smuggling in Greece is low2

Regulation of Arms Brokers

In Greece, the activities of arms brokers and transfer intermediaries are specifically regulated by law39 40 41

End User Certificates

Customs regulations in Greece include42 certification of the intended end user of any small arms or ammunition transfer, and/or a written declaration of its intended end use

Transparency of Small Arms Transfers

ChartIn its annual Small Arms Trade Transparency Barometer, the Small Arms Survey compares public reporting among major arms exporting nations on a scale from strong to weak (25 to zero). In recent years, Greece scored

2014: 11.7543
2013: 11.5044
2012: 12.0045
2011: 9.2546
2010: 10.5047
2009: 11.0048
2008: 11.0049
2007: 9.7550
2006: 8.0051
2005: 8.2552
2004: 7.7553

MeasuresGun Regulation

Firearm Regulation - Guiding Policy

The regulation of guns in Greece is categorised as restrictive54

Firearm Law

Guiding gun control legislation in Greece includes the Law No. 2168/93 of September 3, 1993, as amended by the Law No. 4028/11 of November 11, 2011, the Ministerial Decisions No. 900/2553/Σ.751/14 and No.900/7532/Σ. 2126/2012 of 2012,25 39 55 the Presidential Decree No. 3/2008,23 the Council Directive of 18 June 1991 on Control of the Acquisition and Possession of Weapons,56 57 the European Union Firearms Regulation of 2012 and the Common Position on the Control of Arms Brokering of 200358

Firearm Regulation Authority

Guns in Greece are regulated by the General Directorate of Defense Procurement and Investment,23 the Ministry of Public Order,2 and the European Commission57

Right to Possess Firearms

In Greece, the right to private gun ownership is not guaranteed by law59 60

Restricted Firearms and Ammunition

In Greece, civilians are not allowed to possess automatic firearms, firearms disguised as other objects, and armour-piercing, incendiary and expanding ammunition61 62

Regulation of Automatic Weapons

In Greece, private possession of fully automatic weapons is prohibited61 62

Regulation of Semiautomatic Assault Weapons

In Greece, private possession of semi-automatic assault weapons is permitted only with special authorisation63 64 62

Regulation of Handguns

In Greece, private possession of handguns (pistols and revolvers) is permitted only with special authorisation61 63 64 62

Gun Ownership and Possession

In Greece, only licensed gun owners65 61 63 may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition

Genuine Reason Required for Firearm Possession

Applicants for a gun owner’s licence in Greece are required to establish a genuine reason to possess a firearm, for example hunting, target shooting, personal protection, security66

Minimum Age for Firearm Possession

The minimum age for gun ownership in Greece is 18 years66

Gun Owner Background Checks

An applicant for a firearm licence in Greece must pass a background check which considers criminal, mental health and domestic violence66 records

Domestic Violence and Firearms

Where a past history, or apprehended likelihood of family violence exists, the law in Greece stipulates (violent behaviour)2 that a gun licence should be denied or revoked

Limit on Quantity, Type of Ammunition

Licensed firearm owners in Greece are permitted to possess only ammunition suitable for the intended firearm67

Firearm Registration

Civilian Gun Registration

In Greece, the law requires68 69 that a record of the acquisition, possession and transfer of each privately held firearm be retained in an official register

Gun Dealer Record Keeping

In Greece, licensed firearm dealers are required69 to keep a record of each firearm or ammunition purchase, sale or transfer on behalf of a regulating authority

Gun Manufacturer Record Keeping

In Greece, licensed gun makers are required23 to keep a record of each firearm produced, for inspection by a regulating authority

State-Owned Firearm Records

In Greece, State agencies are required70 to maintain records of the storage and movement of all firearms and ammunition under their control

Gun Sales and Transfers

Regulation of Dealer Gun Sales

In Greece, dealing in firearms by way of business without a valid gun dealer’s licence is unlawful55 71 64

Storage and Transport of Guns and Ammunition

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Private

Firearm regulations in Greece include2 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of private firearms and ammunition by licensed gun owners

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Government

Government regulations in Greece include70 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by state entities

Firearm and Ammunition Transport Regulations

Regulations in Greece include25 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition while in transit

Marking and Tracing Guns and Ammunition

Firearm Marking

In Greece, a unique identifying mark on each firearm is required by law23 68 72 73 74 75 55

Firearm Tracing

In Greece, state authorities carry out76 77 74 69 recognised arms tracing and tracking procedures

Carrying Guns

Carrying Guns Openly in Public

In Greece, carrying a firearm in plain view in a public place is allowed without a permit, with some restrictions2

Penalty for Illicit Firearm Possession

In Greece, the maximum penalty for unlawful possession of a firearm78 is two years in prison79 55

Collection, Amnesty and Destruction Programmes

Firearms Surrendered and Seized

ChartIn Greece, the number of firearms voluntarily surrendered, bought back or seized by authorities is reported to be

2012: 13380
2009/14: 8,94681

MeasuresInternational Controls

Regional Agreements

European Union

As a member of the European Union, Greece is bound by the provisions of the ‘EU Firearms Directive’ – the 2007 Legislative Resolution on Control of the Acquisition and Possession of Weapons of the European Parliament82 83

European Union Export Reporting

Under the European Union Common Position on Arms Exports, Greece is bound to declare its transfers of military technology and equipment. Independent monitoring provides detailed comparisons of arms export reporting compliance across EU member states, and records that Greece has yet to submit a national report84 on its arms transfers

Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development

The Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development, a diplomatic initiative aimed at addressing the interrelations between armed violence and development, was signed in 200685 by Greece.

United Nations Arms Trade Treaty

The United Nations Arms Trade Treaty has been signed and ratified86 by Greece

United Nations Firearms Protocol

The United Nations Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition has been signed and ratified87 by Greece

United Nations Small Arms Programme of Action UNPoA

UNPoA Commitment

On 21 July 2001, Greece committed to a consensus decision of the United Nations to adopt, support and implement the UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects88

UNPoA Implementation Monitor Score

In its UN small arms Programme of Action Implementation Monitor (PoAIM Phase 1), the Small Arms Survey scored Greece against its commitments to the PoA, then ranked it at No. 7889 90 91 92 among 159 Member States

UNPoA National Reporting

Under the terms of its 2001 commitment to the United Nations small arms Programme of Action, Greece has submitted one or more national reports93 73 on its implementation of the UNPoA

UNPoA National Point of Contact

In Greece, a National Point of Contact to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has not been designated94 73

UNPoA Civil Society Involvement and Support

In National Reports of Greece submitted to the UN from 2001 to 2010, a history of substantive cooperation with civil society in support of UNPoA activities was not apparent73

UNPoA International Assistance – Donor

Funds for UNPoA implementation have been donated73 by Greece to other UN Member States

United Nations Small Arms Register

According to the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms, Greece has declared95 its small arms exports in one or more annual National Reports on Arms Exports.

United Nations Membership

In the UN List of Member States, Greece has been a Member State of the United Nations since 194596

Wassenaar Arrangement

The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls and Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies lists97 Greece as a Participating State

BackgroundCountry Profile

Conflict Profile

For a profile of conflict in Greece, select the Link icon to open an external web page from the UCDP Conflict Encyclopedia at Uppsala University

Global Peace Index

To see where Greece ranks, select the Link icon to open an external web page at the Global Peace Index


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