Former top Australian official calls for travel warning to U.S. due to gun violence
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A former Australian politician says his country should warn citizens about traveling to the U.S. in the wake of the San Bernardino, Calif., shooting.
Tim Fischer, a former deputy prime minister who spearheaded Australia’s mandatory gun buyback program in 1996, said it is time to “call out” the U.S. on gun violence.
“Three hundred and fifty-two mass shootings in the U.S.A. so far this year, but about 80 a day you don’t hear about,” Fischer said in an interview with ABC News on Thursday.
"Have we not reached the stage where the Smart Traveler advice of the [Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade] needs to be muscled up?” he asked.
Fischer said he is “a bit sick and tired” of the U.S. “chucking handballs” at Australia, noting that the U.S. said it was unsafe to go to Sydney after the Nov. 13 Paris attack.
“It’s time to call out the U.S.A.,” he said.
He said the National Rifle Association “in particular needs to be called out for their unacceptable blockage of any sensible reform, including magazine limitation.”
The FBI says there were 160 “active shooter incidents” in the U.S. from 2000 to 2013.
The gun homicide rate in the U.S. declined by 49 percent from 1993 to 2014, according to the Pew Research Center.