Trump directs DOJ to ban 'bump stock' gun accessories

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"I signed a memorandum directing the Attorney-General [Jeff Sessions] to propose regulations to ban all devices that turn legal weapons into machineguns", Trump said at the White House on Tuesday.

"I don't have any specific announcements but we haven't closed the door on any specific front", Sanders said.

"I am not going back to school until lawmakers and the president change this law", said Tyra Hemans, a 12th-grade student of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where the shooting occurred.

Bump stocks are an accessory that enables semi-automatic rifles to fire more rapidly, at the cost of precision.

Nikolas Cruz, the 19-year-old accused of the February 15 killings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., did not use a bump stock, authorities have said.

"Possessing firearm parts that are used exclusively in converting a weapon into a machine gun is illegal", said Attorney General Jeff Sessions in that press release.

"Today, I am directing the Department of Justice to dedicate all available resources to complete the review of the comments received, and, as expeditiously as possible, to propose for notice and comment a rule banning all devices that turn legal weapons into machineguns, Trump said".

Speaking from the White House briefing room Tuesday, Press Secretary Sarah Sanders officially confirmed President Trump supports a ban on bump stocks.

Stunned by the deadliest high school shooting in US history, students mobilized across the country to organize rallies and a national walkout in support of stronger gun laws, challenging politicians they say have failed to protect them.

What are bump stocks: United States law prohibits the sale of automatic weapons made after 1986.

"We know that members of both parties and multiple organizations are planning to take a look at bump stocks and related devices".

Florida school shooter Nikolas Cruz, 19, had a history of troubling behaviour and a person close to him warned the Federal Bureau of Investigation five weeks before the shooting that he was a threat - but no action was taken. "Doing this the right way will ensure that the resulting regulation is workable and effective and leaves no loopholes for criminals to exploit".

Despite the president's move, Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein doubled down on legislation banning the devices.

The president, echoing something Vice President Mike Pence said over the weekend, said school security will be a top priority for his administration.

Cornyn is taking the lead among Senate Republicans on legislation that would increase government accountability for the background check system and address "bump stocks", mechanisms that can essentially transform firearms into automatic weapons.

But any tangible movement on gun reform at the federal or state level has remained elusive, as evidenced Tuesday by a failed vote in Florida's Republican-controlled House, which sought to consider a ban on large-capacity magazines and assault rifles such as the AR-15 - the same gun used by the Parkland shooter.

Fifty-eight lives were tragically ended last October, after the man responsible for the Las Vegas massacre used a fire arm modifier known as a bump stock to shoot rapid fire.

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