Putin shows off sniper skills firing Kalashnikov rifle
MOSCOW (AFP) – Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday showed off his marksmanship by testing out a new Kalashnikov sniper rifle and hitting the target more than half the time.
Russian state television showed Putin in goggles and earphones crouching as he fired the silver rifle at the Kalashnikov company’s shooting range outside Moscow.
“The target is set up practically at the maximum distance,” Rossiya 24 television reported, saying that Putin appeared to be pressing the trigger while holding his breath and between heartbeats as professional snipers are supposed to do.
Putin “shot five times and hit the target more than half the time” the television channel reported. Russian defence ministry channel TV Zvezda reported the semi-automatic weapon Putin fired is “an ultra-modern rifle for Russian snipers”.
Putin was visiting a military-themed park called Patriot in the Moscow region where he laid the foundation stone for a Russian Orthodox Church.
Kalashnikov, known for the iconic AK-47 assault rifle, last month surprised observers by unveiling the prototype for a retro-styled electric car.