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Czechs civilians get right to shoot terrorists on sight

Deputies in the Czech Republic voted overwhelmingly in favor of a constitutional amendment allowing ordinary citizens to carry arms and use them in a case of a public emergency such as terrorism.

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The Czech parliament has approved a constitutional amendment on security that allows ordinary citizens to take up arms against terrorists. On Wednesday, 139 of the 168-member Chamber of Deputies voted for the amendment, which was proposed by Interior Minister Milan Chovanec of the Czech Social Democratic Party (ČSSD), in response to an EU directive on firearms that was adopted earlier this year.

“We do not want to disarm our own people at a time when the security situation is deteriorating,” Chovanec said during the parliamentary debate on Wednesday. “Show me a single terrorist attack in Europe perpetrated using a legally-owned weapon,” he said.

‘Interior Minister Milan Chovanec for the defense of his home and country.’

The new law states that Czech citizens have the right to acquire, keep and bear arms in order to ensure the security of the state.

It means that the approximately 360,000 licensed gun-owners in the Czech Republic are allowed to carry their weapons in public and use them in case of a public order emergency, such as terrorism.

The EU directive, which was drawn up by the Commission in the aftermath of terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels, was adopted by the EU Council in April. It includes a ban on civilian use of short semi-automatic firearms with loading devices over 20 rounds and long semi-automatic firearms with loading devices over 10 rounds, as well as long firearms that can be easily concealed, for example by means of a folding or telescopic stock.

The directive was criticized by politicians, gun owners and hunters in the Czech Republic, who argue the directive is an infringement of national sovereignty and their right to bear arms.
As well as the constitutional amendment, which still has to be approved by the Senate and the President, the Czech government has also said it will file a complaint with the European Court of Justice about the directive by August 17.

Although Western European countries such as France, Belgium, Germany and the UK have suffered several terrorist attacks in recent years, the Czech Republic has not seen any attacks. The Global Peace Index 2016 ranked the country the sixth safest in the world.

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Guns

Russia’s New Self-Propelled Howitzer Leaves the West Behind

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The first batch of state-of-the-art Koalitsiya-SV self-propelled guns will be supplied to the Russian Armed Forces beginning in 2020. The system is undergoing field tests now, but it is already clear that it leaves its best Western counterparts far behind, RIA contributor Andrei Kots wrote.

First seen in public during rehearsals for the 2015 Victory Day parade in Moscow the Koalitsiya-SV is built around an auto-loaded 152 mm howitzer capable of firing up to 16 rounds a minute, twice as much as any other modern main battle tank. Targeting is done via satellite navigation or a laser target indicator.

The Koalitsiya-SV is a highly robotized system, with a high degree of automation. It features a unified command-and-control system that can automatically select the appropriate shell type for a specific task and the amount of charge required.

It has a firing range of 70 kilometers (43 miles), an absolute record no Western self-propelled gun can match. The US M109 Paladin is able to send shells a mere 30 kilometers (18 miles). Britain’s S90 Braveheart fires 40 kilometers (24 miles) and the French AMX AuF1t has a maximum range of 35 kilometers (21 miles).

The Koalitsiya-SV can simultaneously hit its targets with several shells, each traveling along a different trajectory – something only the German PzH 200 could previously boast of.

All this makes the Koalitsiya-SV akin to a tactical missile system, capable of destroying command posts, air- and missile-defense installations, communication lines and artillery batteries located well behind enemy lines while remaining outside the reach of enemy artillery.

“The introduction of the Koalitsiya-SV is a significant boost to the Russian Ground Forces’ artillery arsenal. Meanwhile, the US Army is expected to operate upgraded versions of the 1960s vintage M109 Paladin self-propelled gun,” The National Interest wrote.

The Koalitsiya-SV will serve as a platform for a new, fully robotic howitzer capable of carrying out combat missions on its own.

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What weapons Russia is going to have in the 21st century

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The issue of cyber security and cyber weapons has been talked about a lot recently. US and British media reported that Russia tested an unknown cyber weapon in the Black Sea in June. The weapon, as it was said, did not let the enemy track the course of warships, disrupted the work of navigators and provided incorrect data on vessels in the vicinity.

In order to find out what secret weapon Russia is developing with the use of new cyber-technologies, Pravda.Ru interviewed Alexei Leonkov, a military expert, an expert in the field of the use of Military Space Forces.

“Western publications are full of reports about Russia’s new cyber weapon that allegedly made a US Navy ship run aground in the waters of the Black Sea after the ship had lost its course. Other sources say that it was not a cyber weapon, but an ordinary “jammer” that operates near secret objects.”

“The vulnerability of the GPS system has been much talked about recently. Not only can one intercept navigation, but also give incorrect coordinates and confuse the enemy. For example, one can recall the story when Iran could confuse coordinates of a US drone aircraft to make the vehicle land on the territory of Iran, having intercepted the control over the UAV.”

Are there any means that can affect the work of onboard equipment?

“Of course, there are ground station of coastal defense. There are long-range electronic warfare complexes that may cause problems for foreign vessels nearby.”

“Military developments of the USSR have always enjoyed very good reputation, everyone knows renowned Soviet tanks and anti-aircraft systems. At the same time, little is known about the products of Russia’s defence industry today. What weapons is Russia going to have in the 21st century? Are we entering the era of cyber warfare?”

“Well, we have combat robots, such as Nerekhta, as well as M and Uran platforms. Uran platform can work to clear areas of mines, but it also works as a robotic module equipped with arms. Some of those modules have been tested in Syria. The Syrian military used six Russian robots there, including M and Argo platforms. The Syrians also used “Carnation” artillery support systems. As a result, the Syrian army had four wounded men, while the militants lost more than 80 people.

“In Syria, Russia also used unmanned aircraft in urban combat conditions, during the siege of Aleppo, for instance. Aleppo was liberated with minimal losses, and everyone knows it. Russia has one of the world’s finest radio electronic struggle systems. In addition, Russia also makes early detection radar complexes, both airborne and ground-based ones. Russia currently works to launch “Voronezh-SD” and “Voronezh-SM” radar stations. When those stations work at full strength, no enemy will be able to violate Russia’s sovereignty unnoticed.”

How effective can unmanned weapons be?

“Russia has both reconnaissance and combat drones. They all differ from the point of view of long-distance and short-range flights. Russia also sets up military units that will be specifically dedicated to working with unmanned aerial vehicles. Under the state arms program before 2020, complexes of unmanned aerial vehicles will be produced. Of course, we are not going to catch up with America – the Americans have more than 7,000 drones, but we will continue improving their quality.”

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