VILNIUS - Gun owners in Lithuania will be required to attend a course on civil resistance from January, the country's parliament decided on Tuesday after 108 lawmakers voted in favor of the proposed amendment, one voted against and 15 abstained.
The Law on the Control of Weapons and Ammunition stipulates that persons will have to undergo a course on civil resistance to obtain permits for category A and B weapons or to renew them.
Laurynas Kasciunas, chair of the parliamentary Committee on National Security and Defense and one of the initiators of the amendment, says a civil resistance course "will certainly help gun owners to know their place in the context of armed defense more clearly".
The course will be free of charge for gun owners, Kasciunas underlined.
The government estimates that the civil resistance course for gun owners will cost around 20,000 per year, and the same number of people would attend the course.
Figures from the Interior Ministry show that almost 57,000 people have gun permits, and 8,061 people were granted such permits last year, and the number almost tripled from the previous year. Every year, around 12,000 citizens are required to renew their weapons permits.