Gun manufacturer Colt announced Thursday that it will no longer produce and sell rifles such as the AR-15 for personal use.

Colt President and CEO Dennis Veilleux said in a statement that the company's "significant" law enforcement and military contracts "are absorbing all of Colt’s manufacturing capacity for rifles."

He said that "the market for modern sporting rifles has experienced significant excess manufacturing capacity."

"Given this level of manufacturing capacity, we believe there is adequate supply for modern sporting rifles for the foreseeable future," he added. 

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He also stressed the company's commitment to consumer markets and gun rights, saying the company would continue to produce "expanding lines of the finest quality 1911s and revolvers."

"We believe it is good sense to follow consumer demand and to adjust as market dynamics change," he said. "Colt has been a stout supporter of the Second Amendment for over 180 years, remains so, and will continue to provide its customers with the finest quality firearms in the world."

The move comes after a number of retailers changed their policies on firearms in recent weeks in the wake of several mass shootings over the summer that renewed a debate about gun control.