Tricked out AK Spotted In Mali

A reader emailed us the above frame taken from a video about the French intervention in Mali showing a Chadian fighter. His AKM is very interesting. It is outfitted with accessories that would make soldiers from far better funded armies jealous.

The stock is a CAA Tactical M4-Style 6-position stock. Its recoil pad is missing about an inch of rubber at the top. It is possible that the position select lever has broken off and the stock is pinned in position.

Chadiano en Gao stock

The forward quad rail and scope mount is the Mako Aluminum 4-Rail Integrated Rail System. It is even accessorized with rail covers!

Chadiano en Gao quad-1

The scope looks to be an EOTech holographic sight. Either the EOTech 553 or a similarly sized model.

Yesterday Michael wrote about the firearms used by the French forces.

Many thanks to Jesús for the tip. 

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • milo

    what i wonder is how the hell they can get an EOtech there when the gunshops near me are sold out.

    • You should wonder why he has an EoTech, since he’s not aiming.

      • Graham2

        It’s not a problem, as he’s not actually firing the weapon despite having his finger on the trigger! The safety is on.

        • Most likely it isn’t an EoTech but a Chinese copy you can buy most anywhere.

          • mikewest007

            Yeah, that was my thought too.

          • MacK

            I would hazard to guess they are real, Chad got their waiver and gets DOD bucks for supporting GWOT.

    • Higgs

      Probably trained and supplied by French special forces.

    • Walter E. Kurtz

      Reminds me of watching my nephew trying to figure out why his Eotech didn’t work…until I pointed out that he had mounted it on backwards.

      • milo

        reminds me of the kids that play airsoft that mount it backwards because it looked cool.

  • I hope the Bore is in good shape, because I am becomeing unnaturally paranoid about bore condition now.

  • Higgs

    That isn’t an AK 74. Just a AKM with a Bakelite magazine.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Yeah, It’s definitely some form of AKM. Look at the muzzle, most AK-74s don’t have a small muzzle nut like that.

    • Steve (TFB Editor)

      My mistake, thanks for pointing it out.

    • Lance

      No that’s a AKM the Soviets briefly made Bakelite AKM mags.

  • ya higgs is right ak-47, the ak74 doesn’t have a crazy curve in the mag

  • Joe Schmoe

    The front grip is a CAA FVG-5B folding grip, I would recognize that grip anywhere.

  • Migo

    hi Steve i’ve sent you a photo essay about weapons used by Egyptian Police Foce i’ve let go since i got no reply from TFB but it came back to me after recent clashes in Port Saied and after i saw a piece about firearms used by the French forces, i still think it’s worth posting on TFB, thanks

  • Nadnerbus

    Needs a cheek riser, the Eotech would be about an inch and a half too high. Also, trigger discipline, and probably not a good idea to get in the habit of holding it by the gas block.

    I guess gear like that could make anyone a slightly better shooter, but it seems a waste to put money into equipment for troops that probably aren’t well enough trained to get the most out of it. I guess I could be off on this one though.

    • northor

      don’t underestimate the chadian forces, they are better at fighting in that enviroment than any other force currently deployed in the theatre. Probably also the only force that can be effective in that enviroment once summer sets in.

  • Bull

    are you sure the rail isnt a UTG rail?

  • john

    That’s a Type 56, with the hooded front sight.

  • Esh325

    I don’t think somebody like him would benefit from an Eotech.

  • wow, looks like someone got the bling perk in CoD!

  • He should put his foregrip on the left rail if he wants to hold it like that and not burn his hands.

  • Double Tapper

    MAKO doesn’t make rail systems, they just import and distribute for FAB Defense. Look

  • Anonymoose

    We cowadooty now.

  • Seth

    It’s standard issue in FAS (Forces Armées et de Sécurité, Chad military) commandos, which, unlike malians, are both well trained, highly mobile and are extremely experienced in desert warfare (the tale as how they infiltrated an Qaddafi column with a handful of their own vehicles a couple years back under the cover of a sand storm, wreak havoc and destroyed the whole unit is a famous one in some circles).

    • northor

      and they are probably also the only force that can fight effectively once the summer heat sets in, the sahara isn’t something you just mess around in. It’s projected that the heat (which is of a wholly different level than iraq and afghanistan) will render most of the european and west african forces combat ineffective, not so for chad, they have been fighting in this enviroment for a long time.

    • Very interesting! Thanks for sharing, bud.

    • 11b

      They seem well equipped. Very interesting.

    • Kosme

      Do you have any link with more info on the FAS ?? Really interesting.

    • Drebin

      I would love to read the famous story of Chadian soldiers destroying a Qaddafi column. Got any links?

    • Kai

      Those guys look mean

  • Komrad

    Is it possible that the Eotech is a Chinese (or other origin) clone/copy/fake?

    Eotech’s aren’t exactly cheap.

  • bando

    he just watched the magpul dvd THAAAMMBB OVVURRR BOOORRRRR

  • Lance

    I think its not a Mali Army AKM but more illect weapons going all over the Islamic world. Syria has them but most AKs in North Africa are standard. I think Syria may be giving some arms to Mali Islamist rebels in a massive world Jihad. Most of these new features are easily bought over the internet anyway. But I seen alot of pics of regular AKM and AKs with wood stocks in use.

    • Tom

      Doubtful. The Syrian regime are Alawite Muslim, the Jihadists in Mali (and elsewhere) are Wahabi Muslims, the two groups dont exactly get along. For the most part Syria is/has been a secular state though the increasing isolation of Syria has lead them to come closer to Iran. FYI Alawite Islam is an “offshoot” of Shia Islam so its understandable that the two countires would be close especialy as they share various goals concerning Hezbollah and the Israli Palestinian conflict.

      • Lance

        Just saying the Syrian Muslim rebels may give older Aks to the Mali rebels since Europe gave them Styre AUGs recently.

        • Tom

          Ah I see you think Syrian Rebels rather than the regime. This would make more sense. The rebels do seem to contain alot of of what one might describe as Al Quedia sympathisers. But I think it would take time for arms to get from Syria to the Magreb. I would suggest that most of the weapons used have ether been in the area for some time or come from Libya.
          Not heard though of any weapons from Europe being supplied to the rebels from Europe. But on what might be a related not I seem to recall that one of the Gulf states was an early adopter of the AUG which could be a source.

  • Andrew

    EOTech 552 on top. This was probably stolen from some Russian unit, probably taken off a dead Russian and funneled through an ex soviet state. This gun looks very much like what an FSB or Alfa operator might use.

    • Chatterbot

      …because that’s clearly the simplest way to get a hold of an Eotech.

  • Even with all that “coolness” factor, it’s wasted with a weapon on “safe” and holding it at the exposed barrel.

  • Cahal

    This pic seems to indicate that it may be Malian troops.

  • Cahal

    Deffo Chadian troops !

  • MacK

    We gave quite a bit of Military Aid and ITAR gear to Chad since GWOT terms started. Of course by policy we dabble and muck about in Africa without real consequence but I bet those are real Eo. 552’s bought and paid for by AidBucks.

    PS – C CLAMP GRIP!!!

  • Big Daddy

    I think he’s showing off for the photographer (who probably staged it) like he’s in battle and ready to fire. The only thing that looks odd and maybe this is why it could be mistaken for a 5.45mm weapon is the thin barrel. I have seen a lot of AKs and handled a Soviet AK47 while in the Army. The AK47 barrel is thicker, maybe this is a Chinese version or another country?????? The way he is holding the barrel is one of the more modern ways to shoot of course it’s very old actually. The EOTech looks pretty worn, this weapon was made tacticool a while ago. The wear patterns on the receiver match the EOTech so this was probably used in this configuration for some time. Just my best guess.

  • YouHanoiMe

    Is that a tricked out finger that is resting on the trigger?