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‘Epidemic of gun violence’

U.S. President Barack Obama

President Obama said he wants to take unilateral action to tackle the problem of gun violence in the US

U.S. President Barack Obama
U.S. President Barack Obama

In his first weekly address of 2016, Mr Obama said he would meet Attorney General Loretta Lynch to discuss possible actions, BBC reported.

“The gun lobby is loud and well organized in its defense of effortlessly available guns for anyone,” Obama said in his weekly radio address. “The rest of us are going to have to be just as passionate and well organized in our defense of our kids.”

He said he gets so many letters from parents, teachers and children about the “epidemic of gun violence” that he can’t “sit around and do nothing.”

He said he would seek to use his executive powers as president because the US Congress had failed to address the problem.

Analysts say there will be a backlash from gun activists and Republicans. But Mr Obama told Americans that he had received too many letters from parents, and teachers, and children, to sit around and do nothing.

“We know that we can’t stop every act of violence,” the president said. “But what if we tried to stop even one? What if Congress did something – anything – to protect our kids from gun violence?”

He has admitted that his inability to win Congressional backing for what he called “common sense gun laws” was the greatest frustration of his presidency.