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2019.06.27 16:00

Seimas backs presidential veto on right to have guns during wartime

Lithuanian parliament, Seimas, on Thursday backed President Dalia Grybauskaitė's veto on the right to have guns during wartime.

The president had vetoed a law stating that guns and ammunitions could be temporarily taken or commandeered during an emergency situation or in case of war.

The president believes such legal regulation creates pre-conditions for taking guns and ammunition from all of their lawful owners in all cases once a state of emergency or martial law is declared, thus limiting the possibility of civic resistance to a potential aggressor.

Lawmakers today backed the proposal to amend this provision and ensure that guns and ammunition would be temporarily taken or commandeered only in exceptional cases when they are needed for the Lithuanian armed forces, or if there are grounds to believe they might be used for criminal activity.

The presidential proposal was backed by 77 lawmakers, while 23 MPs voted for the proposed law to deem non-adopted.

The law is designed to transfer into national law a European directive initiated in response to terror attacks in Europe.