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British supermarket chain bans sale of individual kitchen knives

Rising knife violence rates in the UK, has prompted supermarket chain Asda to no longer sell individual kitchen knives. This comes after the company's decision in 2016 to securely package all knives after a customer was stabbed inside a Poundland, another British grocery chain.

Published: March 11, 2019, 7:39 am

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    Poundland meanwhile called a total ban on selling knives last year. The grocery outlets have been under pressure from a growing knife violence scourge. Sadly, regulating the sale of kitchen knives will do little to stop the violence.

    Over the first three months of 2019, England experienced 41 people killed by a knife based on a BBC report. According to the LA Times, “There were 285 knife homicides in England and Wales from April 1, 2017, to March 31, 2018, the highest number since comparable records began in 1946.”

    England has a population of just under 56 million. The LA Times article continues: “Knives are the most common weapon used in slayings in the UK, where guns are tightly restricted. About 40 percent of the country’s homicide victims were stabbed to death last year, while only 4 percent were shot.”

    The Guardian also noted the rising knife violence in the UK. Possible reasons cited are cuts to police forces across the country, but it does not give the ethnic breakdown of the grim fact that nearly 40 000 knife-related crimes were committed in England in 2018.

    According to the BBC, “Single kitchen knives are the most frequently stolen knives, Asda said, prompting the decision to stop their sale by the end of April.” Nick Jones, Asda senior vice-president, said the company had a “responsibility to support the communities we serve”.

    He added: “Whilst we have already taken steps to restrict the sale of knives to ensure that they do not fall into the wrong hands, we felt there was more we could be doing to support those looking at how to bring this issue under control.”

    In Germany, police reported more than 4 100 knife-related crimes in 2018, compared to around 3 800 reported during 2017 — and only 400 in 2008. Overall, during the past ten years, knife-related crimes in Germany have increased by more than 900 percent — coinciding with the country’s open-border policy.

    German media do not actually report most knife-related violence. Crimes that are reported are often dismissed as “isolated incidents” and mainstream pundits claim that it is unrelated to mass immigration.

    But many crime reports, including those in police blotters, omit references to the nationalities of the perpetrators and victims — apparently to avoid inflaming anti-immigration sentiments. But it has created a lack of official statistics which seemingly allows German authorities to pretend that the problem is imaginary.

    Germany’s knife-crime epidemic has continued nonstop into 2019. During the first 45 days of 2019, police reported more than 500 knife crimes — a staggering average of 11 per day.

    The Conference of Interior Ministers [Innenministerkonferenz, IMK], during a debate on law enforcement issues between the interior ministers of Germany’s 16 federal states, decided that federal crime statistics should include data about knife violence. But before that can happen, German authorities must first “develop guidelines” for statistics on knife crimes, and also “convert technical registration systems in the federal states”.

    Oliver Malchow, chairman of the German Police Union [Gewerkschaft der Polizei, GdP]  called on the government to speed-up the collection of data on knife crimes last month. “We have heard it will not take place until 2022, but we think that is too late.”

    Currently, the Federal Criminal Police Office [Bundeskriminalamt, BKA] “can make no statements as to whether attacks with knives in Germany are increasing”.

    Knife crimes have increased across Europe. In Italy, a 33-year-old Libyan national was arrested by Carabinieri police on Friday after stabbing and injuring two passers-by at Milan’s central station, sources said.

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