Lithuania restores conscription for five years

Lithuanian troops (AP/Scanpix)
3/19/2015 4:21 PM
Category: International

The Lithuanian Parliament has passed a bill to restore conscription on a temporary basis. 112 MPs voted for the bill, three were against and five abstained.

Defense Minister Juozas Olekas said the current military set up has shortcomings which can't be fixed with professional soldiers, ru.delfi.lt reported.

He said the underlying reason for the decision is the new geopolitical situation, pointing to the Ukraine conflict.

The exact details are expected to be worked out in the next few months, but the length of the mandatory service could be nine months with around 3,500 men being called up each year.

Lithuania only discontinued conscription in 2008, two years after Latvia. Latvia said it has no plans to reverse the move, but could more than triple the size of its current professional army.

Estonia is the only Baltic nation still using conscription, calling up around 2,500 men each year for a 8-11 months service.

J.M. Laats

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