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2019.12.12 16:31

Lithuania lowers conscription age

LRT.lt2019.12.12 16:31

Young men between 18 and 23 will be eligible for compulsory military service in Lithuania after MPs voted to lower conscription age.

Under the current rules, men between 19 and 26 can be called up for military service. The minister of defence has previously said that older conscripts suffer greater disruption to their civilian life.

“Young men would perform [the compulsory initial military service] before creating families, starting careers,” Minister Raimondas Karoblis said in a statement on Thursday.

This would potentially lower the rate of service evasion, while leaving a big enough pool to draw conscripts from, he added.

Under the amendment, men who apply to have their service delayed due to university studies would still be eligible to serve until the age of 26.

Men and women between 18 and 38 can volunteer for initial military service.

Lithuania reintroduced 9-month military conscription in 2016. Between 3,800 and 4,000 Lithuanians are called for compulsory service every year.

The amended law also prohibits conscripts to run for elected office.

Read more: Lithuanian ministry moves to lower military conscription age