The AK-74 (Russian: Автомат Калашникова образца 1974 года or "Kalashnikov automatic rifle model 1974") is an assault rifle designed by Soviet small arms designer Mikhail Kalashnikov in 1974. It is chambered for the 5.45×39mm cartridge, which replaced the 7.62×39mm cartridge of Kalashnikov's earlier automatic weapons for the Soviet armed forces.
The rifle first saw service with Soviet forces in the 1979 Afghanistan conflict. The head of the Afghan bureau of the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence claimed that the CIA paid $5,000 for the first AK-74 captured by the Afghan mujahideen during the Soviet–Afghan War.As of 2021, most countries of the former Soviet Union use the rifle. Licensed copies were produced in Bulgaria (AK-74, AKS-74 and AKS-74U), and in the former East Germany (MPi-AK-74N, MPi-AKS-74N, MPi-AKS-74NK).

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