Philippine court wants guns for judges

The Supreme Court said giving judges special permits to carry firearms would allow them to do their jobs without fear amid what it said were threats resulting from their handling of sensitive cases.

"We are appealing to the Comelec (Commission on Elections) to review their policy not to grant gun ban exemptions to our judges," court administrator Jose Midas Marquez told reporters.

In January the elections commission imposed a ban on anyone, except police and military, from carrying guns as part of efforts to control violence ahead of the May 10 national elections.

Philippine society is plagued by a gun culture, and violence often spikes ahead of elections as politicians seek to eliminate or intimidate rivals.
There are more than 1.2 million unlicensed guns and 1.8 million registered ones in the Philippines, out of a population of 90 million people, according to police estimates.

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