New Zealanders hand back 10,000 weapons in amnesty after mosque attacks

New Zealanders have handed in more than 10,000 guns, weapons and accessories during the first week of an amnesty buy-back scheme.

The campaign, which was launched last week , came after the country's worst peace-time mass shooting in March, when a gunman walked into two mosques in Christchurch and killed 51 people.

Laws passed in April banned most semi-automatic weapons , parts that convert guns into semi-automatic weapons, and magazines over a certain capacity.

Some shotguns were also banned.

More than 2,000 people have surrendered 3,275 guns and 7,827 parts, and in return they been paid more than NZ$6m (£3.25m) to compensate them.

Gun owners have until December to hand back their weapons, with the government setting aside NZ$208m (£112m) to pay owners up to 95% of the original cost.

New Zealand police said they were pleased with the turnout of those handing back weapons on Sunday, after 684 people surrendered nearly 5,000 weapons and parts at events across the country.

Police superintendent Karyn Malthus said in Auckland hundreds of firearms had been handed in, adding: "The feedback from firearms owners at the event has been very positive."

Local media reported that a proposed Gun City megastore was facing a backlash earlier in the week in Christchurch, due to the events in March which led more than 50 people dying.

Brenton Tarrant, the man accused of the terror attack, bought four weapons, as well as ammunition at the Gun City online store in the early part of 2018.

Tarrant has pleaded not guilty to 92 charges over the attacks, including the first-ever charge of terrorism in the country.

According to the Small Arms Survey, New Zealand ranks 17th in the world in terms of civilian gun ownership, with 1.5 million firearms owned by a population of just under five million people.