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29 Apr, 2019 15:07

Trump says NRA ‘under siege’ as New York AG launches probe into the gun rights group

Trump says NRA ‘under siege’ as New York AG launches probe into the gun rights group

US President Donald Trump has tweeted his support for the National Rifle Association (NRA), branding the ongoing probe into it a “siege” and urging the embattled non-profit to end infighting and get back to “greatness.”

Trump's words of support came a day after New York State Attorney General Letitia James launched an investigation into the finances of the NRA. James had earlier vowed to investigate the non-profit status of the NRA, as well as that of the Trump Organization group of businesses.

The US president blasted the probe as a “siege,” waged against the NRA by the AG and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. Ultimately, they are seeking to “destroy this very important organization,” Trump claimed.

Trump urged the NRA to “get its act together quickly, stop the internal fighting” and get back to “greatness” as fast as possible. The organization has indeed faced internal troubles recently, with the group's president, Oliver North, getting into feud with its longtime chief executive Wayne LaPierre.

North, a central figure in the Reagan-era Iran-Contras scandal, became the president of the group last year and was initially endorsed by LaPierre, yet the relationship between the two deteriorated rapidly. LaPierre has apparently gained the upper hand, as North announced on Saturday he won't be re-nominated as the NRA's president for the next term.

Also on rt.com New York AG launches investigation into NRA finances as it is beset by internal strife

Trump is well known for his continuous support of the NRA, despite all the controversy the group has stirred up. Last year's mass shootings – namely the Parklands school attack – in the US have reinvigorated the gun controls crowd, which made the group its prime target.

The US president appeared before the NRA convention in Indianapolis last week, announcing his decision to withdraw from the UN Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The agreement was signed by the US under the Obama administration in 2013, yet it had never been ratified.

The NRA had long opposed the agreement, claiming it threatens gun rights and the 2nd Amendment. While the international deal focused on overseas arms trade does not seemingly affect domestic gun policies, it does require signatories to “establish and maintain a national control system” run by “competent” authorities.

Also on rt.com 'Blatant pandering' to gun lobby: Dem chair announces hearing over Trump's UN Arms Trade Treaty exit

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