One of the attackers in Vienna travelled to Slovakia in mid-July. He could have purchased ammunition and weapons in Slovakia, the Heute.at website reported.
On November 2 the man killed four civilians and wounded at least 22 others, including one Slovak. He was born in Austria and had roots in North Macedonia, as well as being a supporter of the Islamic State. Police gunned him down.
Weapons from Slovakia
The attacker was sentenced to 22 months in prison in April 2019 for an attempt to travel to Syria, but he was released on condition in December, the Sme daily reported.
In July, he travelled with a friend to Slovakia to purchase ammunition and an AK-47 (or Kalashnikov), according to Heute.at. The website also reported that he had bought the gun.
Expansional depreciated weapons, such as AK-47 and 61 Scorpion, can be purchased in Slovakia legally. They are used by military history clubs. Their barrel is usually welded and so only a blank shell can be used.
However, the state toughened up conditions after the terrorist attack on the Charlie Hebdo newsroom in Paris in January 2015. It is now necessary to report the purchase to the police.
Terrorists usually have the guns adjusted so they can work like automatic weapons again.
The attacker was supposed to have travelled to Slovakia in the car of his friend’s mother from Kosovo.
Slovak police are closely cooperating with their Austrian counterparts on the case, said police spokesperson Denisa Bárdyová.
“We are in close contact and we’re checking the possible movement of suspicious people in Slovakia’s territory,” she told Sme.
The police said that only a holder of a gun licence, firearm licence and arms extradition cover letter for permanent export may purchase ammunition in Slovakia.
He could not do so legally
Slovak experts commented that a terrorist was photographed with a weapon from the Serbian manufacturer Zastava, used during the war in Yugoslavia. The photo suggests that it is a model M70, a clone of the Kalashnikov and probably an M57, which could not be legally obtained in Slovakia, they said.
The attacker could not have owned gun licence, as he was younger than 21 and he had been convicted.
If he had wanted to purchase a legally expansional weapon, he would have had to do paperwork with the police, said Ľudovít Miklánek, head of Legis Telum, an association of gun owners, as reported by the TASR newswire.