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Ireland — Gun Facts, Figures and the Law

StockpilesGun Numbers

Civilian Guns

Number of Privately Owned Firearms

ChartThe estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in Ireland is

2017: 342,0001
2013: 185,6822 3 4
2008: 256,432
2007: 250,016
2006: 243,594
2005: 243,7702 3 4 5
2004: 236,8342 3 4

Rate of Civilian Firearm Possession per 100 Population

ChartThe estimated rate of private gun ownership (both licit and illicit) per 100 people in Ireland is

2017: 7.201
2013: 3.896 7 4
2008: 5.68
2007: 5.66
2006: 5.65
2005: 5.816 7 4 5
2004: 5.796 7 4

Number of Privately Owned Rifles

In Ireland, the number of rifles in civilian possession is reported to be 49,0008 9

Number of Privately Owned Shotguns

In Ireland, the number of shotguns in civilian possession is reported to be 118,0008 9

Number of Privately Owned Handguns

In Ireland, the number of handguns in civilian possession is reported to be 1,6208 10 11

Number of Privately Owned Firearms - World Ranking

In a 2007 comparison of the number of privately owned guns in 178 countries, Ireland ranked at No. 9812

Rate of Privately Owned Firearms per 100 Population - World Ranking

In a 2007 comparison of the rate of private gun ownership in 178 countries, Ireland ranked at No. 705

Proportion of Adults Living in a Home With a Gun

In Ireland, the percentage of adults living in a household with a firearm is reported to be

2015: 6%13

Proportion of Households with Firearms

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

2005: 12.4%14

Proportion of Households with Handguns

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

2005: 1.0%14

Number of Registered Firearms

ChartThe number of registered guns in Ireland is reported to be

2017: 200,0001
2013: 168,6208 15
2008: 233,12010 9
2007: 227,28710
2006: 221,449
2005: 221,609
2004: 215,304

Rate of Registered Firearms per 100 Population

ChartThe rate of registered guns per 100 people in Ireland is

2013: 3.736
2008: 5.16
2007: 5.14
2006: 5.14
2005: 5.28
2004: 5.26

Estimated Number of Unregistered and Illicit Firearms

ChartUnregistered and unlawfully held guns cannot be counted,16 but in Ireland there are estimated to be

2017: 142,0001
2013: 16,8622 16 4
2008: 23,312
2007: 22,7292 16 4 17
2006: 22,1452 16 4
2005: 22,161
2004: 21,530

Estimated Rate of Unregistered and Illicit Firearms per 100 Population

ChartUnregistered and unlawfully held guns cannot be counted,16 but in Ireland the rate of such firearms per 100 people is estimated to be

2013: 0.356
2008: 0.52
2007: 0.51
2006: 0.51
2005: 0.53
2004: 0.53

Government Guns

Number of Military Firearms

The defence forces of Ireland are reported to have 26,63618 firearms

Routine Arming of Police

In Ireland, police officers on routine patrol do not carry a firearm19

Number of Law Enforcement Firearms

Police in Ireland are reported to have 3,00020 21 firearms

ImpactsDeath and Injury

Total Number of Gun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual deaths resulting from firearms total

2014: 4222
2013: 4623 24 25 26
2012: 42
2011: 39
2010: 46
2009: 57
2008: 52
2007: 41

Rate of All Gun Deaths per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.8722
2013: 0.96
2012: 0.89
2011: 0.83
2010: 1
2009: 1.24
2008: 1.15
2007: 0.93

Total Number of Male Gun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual male deaths resulting from firearms total

2014: 3822
2013: 4222
2012: 40
2011: 38
2010: 43
2009: 55
2008: 49
2007: 41

Rate of Male Gun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of male gun death per 100,000 population is

2014: 1.5722
2013: 1.76
2012: 1.70
2011: 1.63
2010: 1.86
2009: 2.40
2008: 2.16
2007: 1.85

Total Number of Female Gun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual female deaths resulting from firearms total

2014: 422
2013: 422
2012: 2
2011: 1
2010: 3
2009: 2
2008: 3

Rate of Female Gun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of female gun death per 100,000 population is

2014: 0.1722
2013: 0.17
2012: 0.08
2011: 0.04
2010: 0.13
2009: 0.09
2008: 0.13

Homicides (any method)

ChartIn Ireland, annual homicides by any means total

2016: 3827
2015: 29
2014: 3222
2013: 26
2012: 38
2011: 28
2010: 38
2009: 49
2008: 41
2007: 49
2006: 62
2005: 52
2004: 30
2003: 5128 29 30
2002: 59
2001: 58
2000: 56
1999: 4628 30
1998: 51
1997: 3831 30
1996: 42
1995: 43

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

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

2016: 0.7727
2015: 0.59
2014: 0.6622
2013: 0.54
2012: 0.80
2011: 0.60
2010: 0.82
2009: 1.07
2008: 0.91
2007: 1.11
2006: 0.746 32 29 30
2005: 1.24
2004: 0.73
2003: 1.276 33 29 30
2002: 1.50
2001: 1.50
2000: 1.47
1999: 1.226 34 30
1998: 1.37
1997: 1.0431 30
1996: 1.16
1995: 1.19
1991: 0.6235

Male Homicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn Ireland, annual male homicides by any means total

2014: 2722
2013: 22
2012: 30
2011: 27
2010: 33
2009: 40
2008: 33
2007: 42

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

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

2014: 1.1222
2013: 0.92
2012: 1.27
2011: 1.16
2010: 1.43
2009: 1.75
2008: 1.46
2007: 1.89

Female Homicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn Ireland, annual female homicides by any means total

2014: 522
2013: 4
2012: 8
2011: 1
2010: 5
2009: 9
2008: 8
2007: 7

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

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

2014: 0.2122
2013: 0.17
2012: 0.34
2011: 0.04
2010: 0.22
2009: 0.39
2008: 0.35
2007: 0.32

Gun Homicides

ChartIn Ireland, annual firearm homicides total

2014: 1022
2013: 1023
2012: 14
2011: 11
2010: 16
2009: 24
2008: 1736 23 30
2007: 14
2006: 2730
2005: 22
2004: 928 30
2003: 21
2002: 1028
2001: 9
2000: 12
1999: 1228 30
1998: 4
1997: 931 30
1996: 16
1995: 12

Rate of Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.2122
2013: 0.21
2012: 0.30
2011: 0.24
2010: 0.35
2009: 0.52
2008: 0.38
2007: 0.32
2006: 0.630
2005: 0.5
2004: 0.2033 30
2003: 0.50
1999: 0.3234 30
1998: 0.08
1997: 0.2531 30
1996: 0.44
1995: 0.33
1991: 0.0337

Proportion of Homicides Committed With a Gun

ChartIn Ireland, the percentage of homicides committed with a firearm is reported to be

2008: 42.0%30
2007: 23.4%
2006: 43.5%
2005: 42.3%
2004: 30.0%
2003: 46.7%
1999: 31.6%
1998: 7.9%
1997: 23.7%
1996: 38.1%
1995: 27.9%

Male Gun Homicide Victims

ChartIn Ireland, annual male firearm homicides total

2014: 922
2013: 922
2012: 12
2011: 10
2010: 15
2009: 23
2008: 16
2007: 14

Rate of Male Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.3722
2013: 0.38
2012: 0.51
2011: 0.43
2010: 0.65
2009: 1
2008: 0.71
2007: 0.63

Female Gun Homicide Victims

ChartIn Ireland, annual female firearm homicides total

2014: 122
2013: 122
2012: 2
2011: 1
2010: 1
2009: 1
2008: 1

Rate of Female Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.0422
2013: 0.04
2012: 0.08
2011: 0.04
2010: 0.04
2009: 0.04
2008: 0.04

Handgun Homicides

ChartIn Ireland, annual handgun homicides total

2013: 123
2012: 236 23
2011: 5
2010: 6
2009: 3
2008: 3
2007: 2

Rate of Handgun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of handgun homicide per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.0223
2012: 0.0436 23
2011: 0.11
2010: 0.13
2009: 0.07
2008: 0.07
2007: 0.05

Long Gun Homicides

ChartIn Ireland, annual long gun homicides total

2013: 223
2012: 336 23
2011: 4
2010: 4
2009: 2
2008: 3
2007: 3

Rate of Long Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of long gun homicide per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.0423
2012: 0.0636 23
2011: 0.09
2010: 0.09
2009: 0.04
2008: 0.07
2007: 0.07

Gun Homicides (Other)

ChartIn Ireland, annual gun homicides (other) total

2013: 723
2012: 736 23
2011: 2
2010: 11
2009: 15
2008: 11
2007: 9

Rate of Gun Homicide (Other) per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of gun homicide (other) per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.1523
2012: 0.1536 23
2011: 0.04
2010: 0.24
2009: 0.33
2008: 0.24
2007: 0.20

Suicides (any method)

ChartIn Ireland, annual suicides by any means total

2014: 48622
2013: 48722
2012: 541
2011: 554
2010: 486
2009: 527
2008: 506
2007: 458
1997: 46638

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

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

2014: 10.0622
2013: 10.20
2012: 11.46
2011: 11.86
2010: 10.51
2009: 11.51
2008: 11.20
2007: 10.36
1997: 11.7838
1991: 9.8139

Male Suicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn Ireland, annual male suicides by any means total

2014: 39922
2013: 39122
2012: 445
2011: 458
2010: 386
2009: 422
2008: 386
2007: 362

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

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

2014: 16.5322
2013: 16.39
2012: 18.87
2011: 19.64
2010: 16.73
2009: 18.44
2008: 17.05
2007: 16.32

Female Suicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn Ireland, annual female suicides by any means total

2014: 8722
2013: 9622
2012: 96
2011: 96
2010: 100
2009: 105
2008: 120
2007: 96

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

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

2014: 3.6022
2013: 4.02
2012: 4.06
2011: 4.10
2010: 4.32
2009: 4.58
2008: 5.32
2007: 4.36

Gun Suicides

ChartIn Ireland, annual firearm suicides total

2014: 3022
2013: 2924
2012: 2040 24
2011: 27
2010: 25
2009: 25
2008: 31
2007: 22
1997: 4438

Rate of Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.6222
2013: 0.61
2012: 0.42
2011: 0.58
2010: 0.54
2009: 0.55
2008: 0.69
2007: 0.50
1997: 1.1138
1991: 0.9441

Male Gun Suicide Victims

ChartIn Ireland, annual male firearm suicides total

2014: 2722
2013: 2722
2012: 20
2011: 27
2010: 23
2009: 24
2008: 29
2007: 22

Rate of Male Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

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

2014: 1.1222
2013: 1.13
2012: 0.85
2011: 1.16
2010: 1
2009: 1.05
2008: 1.28
2007: 0.99

Female Gun Suicide Victims

ChartIn Ireland, annual female firearm suicides total

2014: 322
2013: 222
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 2
2009: 1
2008: 2

Rate of Female Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.1222
2013: 0.08
2010: 0.09
2009: 0.04
2008: 0.09

Handgun Suicides

ChartIn Ireland, annual handgun suicides total

2012: 040 24
2011: 2
2010: 2
2009: 1
2008: 1
2007: 1

Rate of Handgun Suicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of handgun suicide per 100,000 population is

2012: 0.0040 24
2011: 0.04
2010: 0.04
2009: 0.02
2008: 0.02
2007: 0.02

Long Gun Suicides

ChartIn Ireland, the number of long gun suicides is

2013: 1424
2012: 740 24
2011: 14
2010: 8
2009: 12
2008: 19
2007: 14

Rate of Long Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of long gun suicide per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.3024
2012: 0.1540 24
2011: 0.30
2010: 0.17
2009: 0.26
2008: 0.42
2007: 0.32

Gun Suicides (Other)

ChartIn Ireland, annual gun suicides (other) total

2013: 1524
2012: 1340 24
2011: 11
2010: 9
2009: 18
2008: 11
2007: 7

Rate of Gun Suicide (Other) per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of gun suicide (other) per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.3324
2012: 0.2840 24
2011: 0.24
2010: 0.19
2009: 0.39
2008: 0.24
2007: 0.16

Unintentional Gun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual unintentional shooting deaths total

2014: 122
2013: 525
2012: 5
2011: 0
2010: 242 25 43
2009: 142 25
2008: 2
2007: 042
1997: 338

Rate of Unintentional Gun Death per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.0222
2013: 0.10
2012: 0.11
2011: 0.02
2010: 0.04
2009: 0.02
2008: 0.04
2007: 0.0042
1997: 0.0838
1991: 0.1144

Unintentional Male Gun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual unintentional male shooting deaths total

2014: 122
2013: 422
2012: 5
2011: 0
2010: 2
2009: 1
2008: 2

Rate of Unintentional Male Gun Death per 100,000 People

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

2014: 0.0422
2013: 0.17
2012: 0.21
2010: 0.09
2009: 0.04
2008: 0.09

Unintentional Female Gun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual unintentional female shooting deaths total

2013: 122
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 0

Rate of Unintentional Female Gun Death per 100,000 People

In Ireland, the annual rate of unintentional female shooting death per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.0422

Unintentional Handgun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual unintentional shooting deaths by handgun total

2012: 042
2011: 0
2010: 042 25
2009: 142
2008: 0
2007: 0

Rate of Unintentional Handgun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death by handgun per 100,000 population is

2012: 0.0042
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.0042 25
2009: 0.0242
2008: 0.00
2007: 0.00

Unintentional Long Gun Deaths

ChartIn Ireland, annual unintentional shooting deaths by long gun total

2013: 225
2012: 242 25
2011: 042
2010: 0
2009: 0
2008: 142 25
2007: 042

Rate of Unintentional Long Gun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death by long gun per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.0425
2012: 0.0442 25
2011: 0.0042
2010: 0.00
2009: 0.00
2008: 0.0242 25
2007: 0.0042

Unintentional Gun Deaths (Other)

ChartIn Ireland, annual unintentional shooting deaths by firearm (other) total

2013: 325
2012: 242 25
2011: 042
2010: 242 25
2009: 0
2008: 142
2007: 0

Rate of Unintentional Gun Death (Other) per 100,000 People

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death by firearm (other) per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.0725
2012: 0.0442 25
2011: 0.0042
2010: 0.0442 25
2009: 0.00
2008: 0.0242
2007: 0.00

Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn Ireland, annual shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total

2014: 122
2013: 226
2012: 3
2011: 1
2010: 3
2009: 7
2008: 2
2007: 5
1997: 038

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

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

2014: 0.0222
2013: 0.04
2012: 0.06
2011: 0.02
2010: 0.06
2009: 0.15
2008: 0.04
2007: 0.11
1997: 0.0038
1991: 0.1445

Male Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn Ireland, annual male shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total

2014: 122
2013: 222
2012: 3
2011: 1
2010: 3
2009: 7
2008: 2
2007: 5

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

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

2014: 0.0422
2013: 0.08
2012: 0.13
2011: 0.04
2010: 0.13
2009: 0.31
2008: 0.09
2007: 0.23

Female Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn Ireland, annual female shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total

2013: 022
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 0

Handgun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn Ireland, annual deaths by handgun in which the cause remains undecided total

2012: 046
2011: 0
2010: 0
2009: 0
2008: 046 26
2007: 1

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

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of unknown-cause handgun deaths per 100,000 population is

2012: 0.0046
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.00
2009: 0.00
2008: 0.0046 26
2007: 0.02

Long Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn Ireland, annual deaths by long gun in which the cause remains undecided total

2013: 126
2012: 146 26
2011: 1
2010: 046
2009: 046 26
2008: 1
2007: 046

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

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of unknown-cause long gun deaths per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.0226
2012: 0.0246 26
2011: 0.02
2010: 0.0046
2009: 0.0046 26
2008: 0.02
2007: 0.0046

Gun Deaths (Other) from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn Ireland, annual deaths by firearm (other) in which the cause remains undecided total

2013: 126
2012: 146
2011: 0
2010: 146 26
2009: 3
2008: 1
2007: 4

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

ChartIn Ireland, the annual rate of unknown-cause gun deaths (other) per 100,000 population is

2013: 0.0226
2012: 0.0246
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.0246 26
2009: 0.07
2008: 0.02
2007: 0.09

Legal Intervention Gun Homicides

ChartIn Ireland, annual legal-intervention gun homicides total

2012: 047
2011: 0
2010: 0
2009: 0
2008: 0
2007: 0

ProductionGun Industry

Regulation of Firearm Makers

In Ireland, the manufacture of small arms, ammunition and/or their components is permitted only if the maker holds a valid licence, but is not conducted in practice48 49 50

Home-made Guns

In Ireland, the prevalence of illicit craft, or 'home-made' firearm manufacture is reported to be low51

TransfersGun Trade and Trafficking

Firearm Exports

In Ireland, firearm and ammunition exports are limited by transfer control law52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60

Firearm Exports (Number)

ChartThe annual number of firearms exported from Ireland is reported by manufacturers to be

2018: 1,26761
2017: 850
2016: 965
2015: 27
2014: 1662
2013: 457

Small Arms Exports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition exports from Ireland is reported by Customs to be US$1,285,75363 (2011)

Firearm Imports

In Ireland, firearm and ammunition imports are limited by transfer control law64 55 56 57 58 59

Firearm Imports (Number)

ChartThe annual number of firearms imported to Ireland is reported to be

2018: 3,66261
2017: 1,402
2016: 21
2015: 0
2014: 25762
2013: 120
2010: 60
2009: 16
2008: 500

Small Arms Imports (US$) - Customs

The annual value of small arms and ammunition imports to Ireland is reported by Customs to be US$5,866,93163 (2011)65

Smuggling Guns and Ammunition

Reports suggest that the level of firearm and ammunition smuggling in Ireland is low66 67 68

Regulation of Arms Brokers

In Ireland, the activities of arms brokers and transfer intermediaries are specifically regulated by law69 70 71 72

End User Certificates

Customs regulations in Ireland include52 54 certification of the intended end user of any small arms or ammunition transfer, and/or a written declaration of its intended end use

MeasuresGun Regulation

Firearm Regulation - Guiding Policy

The regulation of guns in Ireland is categorised as restrictive73

Firearm Law

Guiding gun control legislation in Ireland includes the Firearms Act 1925,74 the Firearms (Restricted Firearms and Ammunition) Order 2008,75 the Criminal Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act Number 28 of 2009,76 the firearms (Proofing) Act of 1968,77 the Act of 2008 on Control of Exports and the Order of 2009 on Control of Exports (Goods and Technology),52 69 the Council Directive of 18 June 1991 on Control of the Acquisition and Possession of Weapons,78 79 the European Union Firearms Regulation of 2012, and the Common Position on the Control of Arms Brokering of 200380

Firearm Regulation Authority

Guns in Ireland are regulated by the Garda Síochána81 79

Right to Possess Firearms

In Ireland, the right to private gun ownership is not guaranteed by law82 83 84

Restricted Firearms and Ammunition

In Ireland, civilians are not allowed to possess handguns, military-style weapons, semi-automatic and automatic firearms without appropriate registration85 86 87 88

Regulation of Automatic Weapons

In Ireland, private possession of fully automatic weapons is restricted85 87 88

Regulation of Semiautomatic Assault Weapons

In Ireland, private possession of semi-automatic assault weapons is restricted85 89 90 88

Regulation of Handguns

In Ireland, private possession of handguns (pistols and revolvers) is restricted86 91 85 10 87 89 90 88

Gun Ownership and Possession

In Ireland, only licensed gun owners92 93 94 87 89 may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition

Genuine Reason Required for Firearm Possession

Applicants for a gun owner’s licence in Ireland are required to establish a genuine reason to possess a firearm95 96

Minimum Age for Firearm Possession

The minimum age for gun ownership in Ireland is 16 years97

Gun Owner Background Checks

An applicant for a firearm licence in Ireland must pass a background check which considers criminal, mental health and medical95 98 99 96 records

Reference Required for Firearm Licence

In Ireland, third party character references for each gun licence applicant are required100 101

Domestic Violence and Firearms

Where a past history, or apprehended likelihood of family violence exists, the law in Ireland does not stipulate84 that a gun licence should be denied or revoked

Firearm Safety Training

In Ireland, an understanding of firearm safety and the law, tested in a theoretical and/or practical training course is required95 for a firearm licence

Gun Owner Licensing Period

In Ireland, gun owners must re-apply and re-qualify for their firearm licence every three years102

Limit on Number of Guns

Licensed firearm owners in Ireland are permitted to possess any number of firearms84

Limit on Quantity, Type of Ammunition

Licensed firearm owners in Ireland are permitted to possess any quantity of ammunition84 103

Firearm Registration

Civilian Gun Registration

In Ireland, the law requires104 105 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 Ireland, licensed firearm dealers are required106 107 108 105 to keep a record of each firearm or ammunition purchase, sale or transfer on behalf of a regulating authority

Gun Manufacturer Record Keeping

In Ireland, licensed gun makers are required49 to keep a record of each firearm produced, for inspection by a regulating authority

State-Owned Firearm Records

In Ireland, State agencies are required109 110 111 to maintain records of the storage and movement of all firearms and ammunition under their control

Gun Sales and Transfers

Regulation of Private Gun Sales

In Ireland, the private sale and transfer of firearms is prohibited108

Regulation of Dealer Gun Sales

In Ireland, dealing in firearms by way of business without a valid gun dealer’s licence is unlawful108 112 90

Number of Licensed Gun Dealers

ChartThe number of licensed firearm dealers in Ireland is reported to be

2012: 273113
2011: 300
2010: 329
2009: 325
2008: 319
2007: 335
2006: 339113 114
2005: 358113
2004: 350
2003: 410
2002: 430
2001: 423
2000: 440

Waiting Period for Gun Possession

In Ireland, the minimum wait for a lawful firearm purchase to be completed is undetermined84

Regulation of Gun Shows

In Ireland, gun shows and temporary firearm dealing events are not regulated84 in law

Storage and Transport of Guns and Ammunition

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Private

Firearm regulations in Ireland include115 116 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of private firearms and ammunition by licensed gun owners

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Dealer

Firearm regulations in Ireland include117 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by licensed arms dealers

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Government

Government regulations in Ireland include110 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by state entities

Firearm and Ammunition Transport Regulations

Regulations in Ireland do not include84 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition while in transit

Marking and Tracing Guns and Ammunition

Firearm Marking

In Ireland, a unique identifying mark on each firearm is required by law111 109 118 77 119 120

Firearm Tracing

In Ireland, state authorities carry out109 119 105 recognised arms tracing and tracking procedures

Ballistic Record of Firearms and Ammunition

In Ireland, the ballistic characteristics of each civilian firearm and its ammunition are not84 121 recorded in a register

Carrying Guns

Carrying Guns Openly in Public

In Ireland, carrying a firearm in plain view in a public place is allowed by law, subject to a valid permit.92 No evidence could be found of carry permits being issued.

Carrying Hidden Handguns in Public

In Ireland, carrying a concealed firearm in a public place is allowed by law, subject to a valid permit.92 No evidence could be found of carry permits being issued.

Penalty for Illicit Firearm Possession

In Ireland, the maximum penalty for unlawful possession of a firearm122 is six years in prison123 124 125

Collection, Amnesty and Destruction Programmes

Authorities in Ireland are known to have126 implemented voluntary firearm surrender schemes, and/or weapon seizure programmes in order to reduce the number of illicit firearms in circulation

Firearms Surrendered and Seized

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

2013: 624127
2012: 696
2011: 737
2010: 948
2009: 2,281126 127

Small Arms Destroyed

In Ireland, the number of firearms destroyed following amnesty, collection and seizure programmes is reported to be

2015: 10,199128

Destruction and Disposal Policy

In Ireland, it is state policy129 to destroy surplus, collected and seized firearms rather than return them to the secondary arms market

MeasuresInternational Controls

Regional Agreements

European Union

As a member of the European Union, Ireland 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 Parliament130 131

European Union Export Reporting

Under the European Union Common Position on Arms Exports, Ireland 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 Ireland has submitted one or more national reports132 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 2006133 by Ireland.

Arms Trade Treaty

The Arms Trade Treaty has been signed and ratified134 by Ireland

United Nations Firearms Protocol

The United Nations Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition has not been signed135 by Ireland

United Nations Small Arms Programme of Action UNPoA

UNPoA Commitment

On 21 July 2001, Ireland 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 Aspects136

UNPoA Implementation Monitor Score

In its UN small arms Programme of Action Implementation Monitor (PoAIM Phase 1), the Small Arms Survey scored Ireland against its commitments to the PoA, then ranked it at No. 55137 138 139 140 among 159 Member States

UNPoA National Reporting

Under the terms of its 2001 commitment to the United Nations small arms Programme of Action, Ireland has submitted one or more national reports141 142 on its implementation of the UNPoA

UNPoA National Point of Contact

In Ireland, a National Point of Contact to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has been designated143 142

UNPoA National Coordinating Body

In Ireland, a National Coordinating Body to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has not been designated143 142

UNPoA Civil Society Involvement and Support

In National Reports of Ireland submitted to the UN from 2001 to 2010, a history of substantive cooperation with civil society in support of UNPoA activities was apparent142

UNPoA International Assistance – Donor

Funds for UNPoA implementation have been donated144 142 by Ireland to other UN Member States

United Nations Small Arms Register

According to the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms, Ireland has declared145 its small arms exports in one or more annual National Reports on Arms Exports.

United Nations Membership

In the UN List of Member States, Ireland has been a Member State of the United Nations since 1955146

Wassenaar Arrangement

The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls and Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies lists147 Ireland as a Participating State

BackgroundCountry Profile

Conflict Profile

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

Global Peace Index

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


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