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As Lithuania's parliament is debating amendments to gun control legislation, the country's Riflemen Union argues that if its members and military volunteers were allowed to keep semi-automatic weapons, it would greatly boost Lithuania's defence capacity.
© DELFI (R.Achmedovo nuotr.)

Critics of the proposal note, however, that easier access to weapons can lead to lethal incidents or be used by criminals.

MP Artūras Paulauskas, chairman of the parliamentary National Security and Defence Committee, says he is unconvinced by arguments for stricter gun control.

Meanwhile Robertas Juodka, lawyer and member of the Lithuanian Riflemen Union, believes that if people were allowed to keep semi-automatic weapons at home, this would deter "potential enemies".

"We are talking about allowing riflemen and army volunteers to contribute to the country's defence, with their own money, that is, they could purchase semi-automatic category B and C weapons," Juodka told LRT Radio.

"We could expand the deterrence potential. The potential enemy will be discouraged, because they would not know how many citizens are armed and able to resist. This will take off some burden from the state and strenghen national defence potential."