From the International Business Times:
Previously, Russians were only allowed to own firearms for hunting or target practice, but under the new laws they will be allowed to carry them for self-defence as well.
Though Russia’s murder rate has fallen since the 1990s, when organised crime flourished, figures show the country still has a high murder rate.
In the most recent year for which statistics are available, 2009, there were 21,603 murders in Russia.
This gives it one of the world’s highest murder rates, according to a 2011 UN report.
In the same year the US, which has a population almost twice as large, had 13,636 homicides.
More than 80% of the killings in the US were gun related.
Pro-gun ownership campaigners however point to US statistics as proof that ownership of firearms could keep them safer.
Some Russians blame corrupt police for the high crime rates.
Opposition politician Alexander Navalny, who supports gun ownership, quipped to the New Republic magazine in 2012 that firearms could help keep Russians safer from the law enforcement officers charged with protecting them. . . .
As Russia Today provides more detail:
In spite of its restrictive gun laws, Russia has seen its share gun violence. In 2012, a 30 year old lawyer opened fire on his colleagues at a pharmaceutical company, killing six. Just last year, 15-year-old straight A student, Sergey Gordeyev, killed a teacher and a police officer after taking 29 students hostage.
The government’s press service underscored that carrying a weapon will remain prohibited at educational institutions, establishments which operate at night and serve alcohol, and mass public gatherings such as street demonstrations or protests. The legislation also forbids carrying a weapon while under the influence of alcohol.
The law broadly defines self-defense weapons, including smoothbore long barrelled guns, pistols, revolvers, and other firearms, as well as Tasers, and devices equipped with teargas. Long barrelled fire arms and edged weapons are, however, forbidden by the law. . . .
Saying that these attacks are “in spite” of the restrictive laws is incorrect. The research done by the CPRC and those who work with it indicate that the gun prohibitions actually encourage these attacks.