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Iran has acquired a batch of Kalashnikov AK-103 assault rifles for the national Armed Forces, according to the Iranian Tasnim news agency, cited by Tass. “Several units of the Iranian Armed Forces will be equipped with new Kalashnikov AK-103 assault rifles that are in service with the national armies of Russia, India, Venezuela, Libya, and Namibia,” Tasnim said.
The news agency did not specify the number of the Kalashnikov assault rifles supplied by Russia. According to Tasnim, AK-103 is “a versatile firearm being used by Russia`s Special Operations Forces and the Special Police Units”.
AK-103 chambered for the Soviet M43 7.62x39mm cartridge is a derivative of the legendary Kalashnikov AKM assault rifle. According to the data provided by the Kalashnikov group (a subsidiary of the Rostec state corporation), AK-103 has a full length of 943 mm (including a barrel of 415 mm), a combat weight of 4.1 kg, a firing rate of 600 rds/min, a muzzle velocity of 715 m/s, and an effective firing range of 1,000 m. The rifle has single and automatic firing modes. It can be complemented by the GP-34 (40mm) under-barrel grenade launcher and various Picatinny/Warsaw Pact (‘swallow`s tail’)-standard optical/red-dot scopes.
According to open sources, the Iranian Armed Forces are armed with Kalashnikov AK/AKM and Heckler & Koch G3 assault rifles.