Accessibility links

Breaking News

Russian Officials Praise Late Arms Designer Kalashnikov

Arms designer General Mikhail Kalashnikov holds his iconic "Kalashnikov" assault rifle during celebrations in 1997 of the 50th anniversary of the first-version AK-47.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and other top officials have sent their condolences to the family of arms designer Mikhail Kalashnikov, who died on December 23 after a long illness.

An offiical in the regional administration of Udmurtia said the next day that Kalashnikov, who designed the AK-47 assault rifle, would likely be buried in Izhevsk on December 26.

OBITUARY: Kalashnikov's Uncomfortable Legacy

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev called Kalashnikov's passing "an irreparable loss for our entire country."

Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu called him a "vivid example of selfless service to the Fatherland."

Residents of Izhevsk laid flowers at a monument to Kalashnikov after news of his death was announced.

Kalashnikov designed the AK-47 in 1947 and it was commissioned by the Soviet armed forces in 1949.

There are an estimated 100 million AK-47s currently in circulation.

Based on reporting by Interfax and ITAR-TASS