Small Arms in the Russian News

    Image from

    I’ve always found it funny whenever I look at mainstream media outlets and there’s some unique or rare firearm being displayed. Because my thought process goes something “WOW, that Philippine rebel has a super rare early model Johnson rifle! That’s insane! Who cares about the problems going on, but that gun is rare!”. I probably wouldn’t last long as a Washington Post photo caption writer to say the least…

    Anyways, with the recent murder of a Russian politician and the apprehension of several suspects related to the crime, the media has printed some pictures that are of note because the small arms are somewhat interesting and not seen very much over here in the West. To our Russian readers, these small arms are probably seen on a weekly basis through police or their depiction in the media, so we apologize in advance if these pictures aren’t of any interest to ya’ll.


    This image from Getty Images shows a good shot of a 9x19mm  PP-19-01 “Vityaz”, a modern day descendant of the AKS74U but using blow back operation. This isn’t to be confused with the similar “Bizon” submachine gun that is chambered in a variety of 9mm and 7.65 cartridges.


    This submachine gun appears to be a SR2 “Veresk” chambered in 9x21mm and it seems to be a modern variant from the model that was developed in the 1990s. I’m assuming that the finish is a spray paint application but it also doesn’t match the officers black uniform scheme so either it’s more of a novelty thing or the gun was intended to be used in a different kind of environment. The single point sling appears to be a Black Hawk! type. Image from the New York Times.


    Earlier posts have made a point about Russian LE shooters making extensive use of Western products and this photo fully backs it up. The gun is a PP-19-01 but in this view we can see the Magpul (or Magpul copy) stock in addition to an EoTech 512 (possibly another copy). But what is also evident is the Under Armour face mask as well as the uniform of the officer on the right which appears to be styled after the ACU uniform with the slanted pockets, rank and name tape Velcro patches. Image from MSN.


    This shows a better shot of the PP-19-01 and the thin magazine and Magpul stock. I’m a little nervous about the proximity of the one officer’s sidearm to the suspect, but that is beyond the scope of this article and opinion. Sidearms appear to be Glocks because of the slab sided slide (also appears to be threaded as well) in a carbon fiber holster, but we can’t tell very much from this angle. Image source here.


    Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

    Please feel free to get in touch with me about something I can add to a post, an error I’ve made, or if you just want to talk guns. I can be reached at [email protected]