Russian arms maker Izhmash plans to mass produce a version of its famous Kalashnikov assault rifle for basic military training and for the airsoft game in which participants fire spherical non-metallic pellets from replica firearms, RIA Novosti reported.
"The Yunker-5 gas-cylinder air gun
is a product, with a design, weight and overall dimensions following that of the Kalashnikov assault rifle with a folded buttstock," the company said in a statement.
A woman aims a Kalashnikov assault rifle during a laser tag outdoor game near the city of Rostov-on-Don. Reuters
"The air gun is intended for training and sport shooting with 6-mm plastic balls powered by compressed gas in a cylinder. The air gun can also be used for strike ball," it said.
Tests of the airsoft version of Kalashnikov AK-74M has been completed.
The company hopes the new gun will appeal to fans of strikeball and members of Russia's paramilitary youth organisation, the Voluntary Association for Assistance to Army, Air Force and Navy (DOSAAF).
According to Russian legislation, air guns can be acquired without a license and are not subject to registration.