Firearms

Obama Signs Executive Order Banning AK-47s

AK-47 with camo finish, barrel pointed to the right, lying on a log.

On Wednesday—a day before the Malaysian airliner was shot down—President Obama quietly signed an executive order targeting Russian oil, natural gas, finance and defense companies. Hidden in the details, was a section that effectively bans AK-47s. As always, the devil is in the details, so read on for the straight scoop.

Mikhail Kalashnikov
Mikhail Kalashnikov
While signing an executive order to impose new sanctions on Russia, President Obama used his pen to also further his agenda of gun control by including a ban of parts used to build or repair Russian AK-47s. That is the headline and certainly bad news for the gun community. The order immediately will have an effect on Concern Kalashnikov.

KALASHNIKOV CONCERN (a.k.a. CONCERN KALASHNIKOV; a.k.a. IZHEVSKIY MASHINOSTROITEL’NYI ZAVOD OAO; f.k.a. IZHMASH R&D CENTER; f.k.a. JSC NPO IZHMASH; f.k.a. NPO IZHMASH OAO; a.k.a. OJSC CONCERN KALASHNIKOV; f.k.a. OJSC IZHMASH; f.k.a. SCIENTIFIC PRODUCTION ASSOCIATION IZHMASH JOINT STOCK COMPANY), 3, Derjabin Pr., Izhevsk, Udmurt Republic 426006, Russia; Registration ID 1111832003018 [UKRAINE2].

Concern Kalashnikov’s U.S. importer is RWC Group. The new ban will include Izhmash rifles—rimfire and centerfire bolt-action rifles—and semi-automatic Saiga rifles and shotguns based on the Kalashnikov action. Fortunately, there are a few facts in which gun enthusiasts may find some solace. First, the law only applies to Russian made AKs. Therefore, all AK’s and parts imported from other countries are still legal. Second, Executive Order 13662 does not impact any firearms or parts that have already been imported—well almost…it seems there was a gray area regarding item already imported, but which money was still owed to Concern Kalashnikov.

The obvious question of transactions in progress was immediately raised, and the Treasury Department offered a quick clarification:

374. If I own a Kalashnikov product, is that product blocked by sanctions? Am I able to resell a Kalashnikov product at a gun show or other secondary market? If a U.S. person is in possession of a Kalashnikov Concern product that was bought and fully paid for prior to the date of designation (i.e., no payment remains due to Kalashnikov Concern), then that product is not blocked and OFAC sanctions would not prohibit the U.S. person from keeping or selling the product in the secondary market, so long as Kalashnikov Concern has no interest in the transaction. New transactions by U.S. persons with Kalashnikov Concern are prohibited, however, and any property in which Kalashnikov Concern has an interest is blocked pursuant to OFAC’s designation of Kalashnikov Concern on July 16, 2014. If a U.S. person has an inventory of Kalashnikov Concern products in which Kalashnikov Concern has an interest (for example, the products are not fully paid for or are being sold on consignment), we advise that U.S. person to contact OFAC for further guidance on handling of the inventory. [7-16-2014]

In plain English, it means as long as you own the product and do not owe Kalashnikov Concern any money for it, you are clear of the executive order, can shoot, sell or do whatever you please with the firearm or part within the limits of the existing laws. However, if you have any product on consignment, layaway, or what-have-you, you’ll have to work it out with Kalashnikov Concern—without running afoul of the federal government.

Picture shows a black Saiga semi-auto rifle with a fixed stock.
The Saiga utilizes the same design as the AK-47 with a gas piston operating system.
The purpose of the executive order was to sanction Russia for actions relating to the Ukraine. However, this is unlikely to move the needle on that front, but will certainly impact the future of RWC Group and the American jobs it provides. As of the time of this writing, RWC is expected to release a statement in the coming days. However, by the time of this article’s publication, it may already be available.

Did the President simply act within the Nation’s interest, or were firearms included as part of a larger gun control agenda? Give us your take on the President’s latest use of his pen in the comment section.

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (291)

  1. I can not believe Obama did that. He’s out now, no worries; he can never manage again. The right to bear arms includes all foreign arms, including keeping those from the battlefield & ones from England & France. He would not understand that anyway because he never fought in the patriotic wars, like me. The amendment never had a restriction, that’s what my father Thomas wrote. It was not meant to be changed for capitalism. I know why though, his stimulus package included selling stateside AR’s. Disregard that order.

  2. Pingback: Ode to the AK
  3. “Of all the weapons in the vast soviet arsenal, nothing was more profitable than Avtomat Kalashnikova model of 1947. More commonly known as the AK-47, or Kalashnikov. It’s the world’s most popular assault rifle. A weapon all fighters love. An elegantly simple 9 pound amalgamation of forged steel and plywood. It doesn’t break, jam, or overheat. It’ll shoot whether it’s covered in mud or filled with sand. It’s so easy, even a child can use it; and they do. The Soviets put the gun on a coin. Mozambique put it on their flag. Since the end of the Cold War, the Kalashnikov has become the Russian people’s greatest export. After that comes vodka, caviar, and suicidal novelists. One thing is for sure, no one was lining up to buy their cars. ” – Quote from “Lord of War”

    It’s too bad that these sanctions have effected the import of quality AK builds, but to Mr. Ruger’s point, it’d be kind of strange to impose sanctions on Russia without AKs being included. It’s crazy to me to see entry level AKs now come in at a higher cost than entry level ARs, and what I would refer to as just a “standard AK” come in at the same price point as a tricked out AR.

    I haven’t researched this much, but my hope is that anything proprietary about the AK platform is long expired, and U.S. manufacturers will take this as an opportunity to invest in the tooling, and make quality receivers and forged/ lined barrels (not the garbage we’re seeing right now).

    I also hope that other manufacturer’s (not necessarily U.S.) take the recent events as an opportunity to manufacture and import affordable 7.62X39, 7.62X54(not sure this one should be on the list), and 5.45X39 ammo.

    1. Also, as a side note, I know the recent Century Arms AKs (100% U.S. manufactured) will get brought up. I heard the reviews on the milled ones are outstanding.

      I haven’t shot one, but I have lifted one and I was not feeling buff enough that day to think that I would enjoy hauling that rifle around for any length of time.

      A quality U.S. made stamped AK (as close to the established Russian manufacturing process, open to improvements) with a solid barrel seems like a wet dream to me.

    2. One AK-47 that did not make your review is the new Kalashnikov USA AK-47 (.http://www.guns.com/2015/08/10/kalashnikov-usa-prices-out-first-wave-of-american-aks/).

      Their rifle is similar to the Saiga I previously purchased, but they offer several models of a finished rifle.

      I understand the rifle is being manufactured in Pennsylvania with the full approval of the Russian AK-47 manufacturer.

      Prices range from the low $700 to $999.00. That pricing is very attractive based on my initial investment and related conversion costs, and it is a real AK-47.

      Kalashnikov USA is now manufacturing a U.S. AK-47 under license from Concern Kalashnikov, and this will eliminate the need for 9022r compliance. Additional detail is available at: http://www.kalashnikov-usa.com/about

  4. Pingback: Top 10 AK Posts
  5. I suspect I will rile up a fair number of you folks but I have rethought this issue and you get to read about it.
    First off don’t mistake thinking I am anything even approaching a leftie, liberal, socialist, communist, democrat uninformed nut. Personally I think Obama is the worst thing that has happened to this country and the biggest deterrent to freedom in my lifetime (60 years). Having said that. I certainly understand the anger over the AK ban however consider this: 1. Obama does not have a clue. He is a mouth piece for the Soros /Bloomberg crowd. 2. Obama was not about to go to war with Russia over the invasion of the Ukraine nor should he. 3. Putting sanctions in place at least gives the appearance that he is doing something and we know the left is all about appearances. 4. Obama was not about to put a freeze on Russian products and specifically leave out AKs. That actually would be dumb. 5. If we never see another Russian made AK in this country we will be just fine. 6. If I’m not mistaken I believe I just read the Russia wants to start building AKs here.
    Personally I buy American Made Guns Anyway but if the big O banned guns manufactured in a “friendly” nation I could see a problem.
    Our concern is 2A, The Right to Bear Arms. It is not the right to purchase Russian made guns. We need to pick our battles carefully and fight them well and we aren’t even doing that.

    1. Mr. “Mc Ruger” convincingly steers attention away from the grandstanding. He offers some hearty “food for thought”, and it would behoove us all if his remarks received our collective consideration !

      WELL said “Mc Ruger”.

  6. Just another example of President Erkel screwing things up. This has nothing to do with Russia. This is simply an excuse to ban guns. Being the communist that he is, one would think that he would love Russia and RUssian goods.

  7. If they can’t be bought from Russia, the simple solution would be for Colt to start production of AK47’s. After all, they’re in the hole with money woes so start producing something else.

  8. So of I’m reading this correctly Russian AKs are banned and the dirty piece of shit obama added in last minute “parts that could repair or build Russian AKs” which I’m supposing includes Romanian, Bulgarian, Chinese, and Serbian parts kits?
    Effectively reducing the AK market to american made AKs only?
    Yugo (Serbian) AKs and Russian AKs aren’t very interchangeable when it comes to parts.

  9. When one door closes, another one opens. This is great news for IOC and Century Arms. Hell, I like my American made AK-47!
    Got Americans working!!!!

  10. It was a ban on AKs it was a ban on anything being imported that’s russian made want to mention that a little more than saying it was just against AKs

  11. Did the President simply act within the Nation’s interest, or were firearms included as part of a larger gun control agenda? This question was posted at the end of the article. First, this president has never made one decision that was in the nations interest. Second, his entire agenda has been to weaken this country, and the people. Obama thinks the Constitution is a door mat, and freedom is something he want to eliminate. Well Mr. president, The people will not go quietly into the night. Live free, or die!

  12. Anyone who has solved a problem knows you don’t patch the reaction or effect and expect the cause or problem to somehow go away. But this is what is happening in the US today.

    A firearm is a tool, a machine, not a living breathing entity. Any irresponsible usage seen occurs relative to the influence of an action, the cause.

    Causation should be the focus, the place energy is spent, but instant-gratification garners votes.

  13. Demsco I absolutely agree with you as well as G-Man. I must say I am dead set against any censorship and believe that political corrects is a violation of the 1st.
    I guess what people don’t understand is that if people would do what they know is right there would not have to be laws forcing them to act a certain way. As an example: It should not be illegal to say the word Nigger. It is simply and arrangement of letters. However people with common sense and an ounce of decency know that it is offensive not just to Blacks but to a lot of people. Therefore I choose not to use it. It’s up to you as an individual to decide for yourself what is right and what is wrong.
    We should and could put nearly every social issue in this same arena. Another example is sharing your good fortune or “redistribution”. We as conservatives believe that if you have the ability to help those less fortunate, you do so. You share what you have because it is the right thing to do and you want to help others. However it is dead wrong for the government to force you to give by taking it from you and deciding how to pass you money out. Doing things because it is right and doing things because the government forces you to is a fundamental difference between the Conservatives and Liberals. We do things because it is right.
    RIGHT get it, Right to do Right, Right. Come on that’s pretty good.

  14. Nikola I think I need to disagree. I agree that they are puppets and that include RR as much as I liked him. Now let me say first that I am a dedicated Conservative and always have been. However from what I know I think Kennedy really tried to break out of the puppet job and fight the system. I was just a kid then but I think part of the reason he was killed was because he resisted knuckling under. just my 2 cents

  15. Perhaps Obama will next support Hamas by banning the further import of Israeli Tavors. It would be a double win, furthering his gun confiscation agenda, and supporting his Muslim brothers.

  16. EO 13662 may only apply to the Kalashnikov Concern (Saiga) and Russian AK 47’s now. In my opinion, Obama is testing the water. HIs next move will probably be to ban all AK 47’s regardless of country of origin.

    The other impact of EO 13662 is going to be the price of those remaining AK 47’s. RWC Group, the sole Kalashnikov Concern (Saiga) importer signed a deal at the 2014 Shot Show to import 200,000 AK47’s over the next 5 years for the U.S. and Canadian markets.

    Source: Kalashnikov plans to sell up to 200,000 rifles in US. Read more: http://voiceofrussia.com/2014_01_14/Kalashnikov-plans-to-sell-up-to-200-000-Rifles-in-US-9043/ 14 January, 14:05

    Other manufacturers will now have to fill that 40,000 rifle annual void. When demand exceeds supply, the price of the goods in demand increases.

    Prices on all AK 47’s, regardless of country of origin will see significant price increases. American jobs at the importer, distributor/dealers, and Saga assemblers like Arsenal Inc., Las Vegas, NV will also be impacted.

    The EO 13662 may also help Obama regain his title as “Gun Salesman of the Year.” Atlantic Firearms posted the following on their web site “NOTICE TO OUR CUSTOMERS…

    Please Note: Due to the recent Import Ban on Russian Based AK firearms we are experiencing heavy order volumes . Please expect it to take approx 4 – 7 business days for any order to ship out , CA Orders may be slightly longer. We are working hard to ship orders out as quickly as possible . Thank You.”

    The Shooter’s Log reflects a number of positions on EO 13662. In my opinion, EO 13662 was issued, not to punish Russia for it’s involvement in Crimea and the Ukraine. It was issued as a test to see how far Obama could go to attack the Second Amendment or impose more gun control prior to the 2014 Mid-term Elections.

    Please form your opinions with a cautionary note. Obama, historically, plays on tragedies to promote his agenda. EO 13662 follows that same format. Regardless of my position, I still respect the opinions of other regarding this matter.

  17. I define a nigger not as a race but the moral issues of the person. Obuma is a true nigger. He is underhanded and dishonest. A virtue of a true nigger. Impeach!!

    1. Come on man, don’t need that crap. Its bad enough that if one disagrees with Obama they are classified as a racist and it is this way because of comments like this. I don’t care what his skin color is or what any liberal/progressive skin color is it is their policies I hate. Not to mention many blacks dislike him and are 2nd amendment supporters but when they see these types of comments they begin to think they are in bad company and we can lose them. Regardless of all that, hating someone because of their race is just plain wrong man and I am as conservative as one can get. Cut the crap, just cause your on the internet and can remain anonymous it doesn’t give the right to say whatever you want. Would you call a black person a n***er to their face? Nope, so don’t say it online or at all. Go take a sensitivity class or something.

    2. @ demsco: Well said. I back your perspective 100%. And to add to your well written and accurate position… In this day and age anyone with a functional amount of common sense should have the intellectual wherewithal to understand the stigma attached to such a word; and thus should know there is simply no place for it anywhere, at any time, or for any reason within modern dialogue.

    3. Obama is just a pupet like all US presidents since 1913 and Wilson..
      they are working for Rotschild, Rockefeller, JP Morgan and other elements of global shadow goverment.

  18. Finally, Somebody see’s and got the greater picture!

    All that being done, is the can being kicked further down the road.

  19. Is this band on Russian AKs necessary? Will it be effective? It only involves AKs sold by Russian companies. The loop hole is many of the Russian Ak’s could be sold to a third party that can legally sell them in the U.S.
    So in the end it isn’t like you’ll be out of Russian AKs. They just will cost more because they are prohibited.

  20. I am taking a contrary position to most. I support this Order to impose sanctions on all Russian products. If that includes Russian AK, so be it! Gas, oil vodka, everything!

    At one time, America stood for something. The greatest generation rationed everything from cocoa and sugar to gas and rubber to support our troops in putting down oppressive Axis powers. You folks are whining about this? Buy Israeli. They make some very fine weapons. Buy Brazilian. Heck … You might even consider buying American and keep our own economy fore most.

    Do not think that I support this administration in most things. I do not. The President AND CONGRESS are shameless in their lack of basic economic understanding. But to remain on topic … This is necessary and should be enacted without exceptions.

    1. @Bob

      you’re blind mate if you dont see what is happening all around us, all over the world. Why ban all russian products , they didnt do anything (dont watch CNN,BBC,SKY, MSNBC etc..). US did a terrible thing to Ukraine and to their people supporting neonazi’s there to come to power and now they want to sancion russia for giving humanitarian aid to those people, taking care of 100k refugees from those regions and giving weopns to un-armed peole being killed by Nazi’s and other right wign militias paid with USD (your tax money) to impose a dictator there to work in western interest agains its own people.. wait and see that shit will come to your doorstep sooner or later, we will see if you will defend your home or not (than you will understan).

  21. ONLY RUSSIAN AK’S FOR NOW , this pres is very devious , once he starts chippimg away he just signs another exec order next will be anything from the former soviet block that does not condem russia, this is excactly what obuma has wanted , this is his chance to ban what he feeels should not be owned by american public, he will not stop with just this if we do not fight him at every chance , the man is evil almost antichrist like and hates america as we know it , he admitted to it in college many times , why did you stupid idots not do some reasearch on this guys beliefs BEFORE YOU ASKED FOR CHANGE? WELL YOU GOT JUST THAT ,CHANGE IN AMERICA AS WE KNOW IT, now lets be NK or iran like now is his beliefs he should have the power of a king he feels and acts like he does , why do we keep letting him get away with it ,BECAUSE WE FEAR THE BLACK MAN IN AMERICA WILL RIOT, well let em riot stop fearing the bastards and get him out of office now, its not because he is black we want him out its because he sux as leader and is dragging america down the toilet into the sewer . and all his dem buddies need to be fired and replaced with non rights stealing law makers not lets ban everything we dont like in america people we have in office now.

  22. @G-Man

    thanks for clarifying, now after reading how it actually works, we need to fix that system. If the presidential office created a loop hole for the president to take advantage of shouldn’t there be some sort of check and balance to ensure this type of thing doesn’t happen in the first place?

  23. The lowlife scummer has spent more money than all of the past presidents have collectively…The George Jefferson of his day Movin on up…and his lowife partner! Get rid of this Liar, traitor, phony and Terrorist sympathizer!

    1. HERE IS MY OPINION AND I’M PASSING ON THE WORD CAUSE I’M MAD AS HELL AND I’M NOT STANDING FOR IT ANY MORE I DON’T LIKE HIM, I DIDN’T VOTE FOR HIM AND I WANT HIM OUT BEFORE HE DOES ANYMORE DAMAGE , IMPEACH OBAMA AND HIS CREW OF YES MEN, AND THE WO’s TOO. (e.g. women) THAT’S THE WORD IMPEACH, PASS IT ON

  24. @ Mc Ruger: You did well… the way you worded everything up there. It certainly hit home for me. I’m glad you didn’t laugh it off this time because it made a difference for me, as I’m sure it will when others read it.

    It put things into perspective and affected me in a positive way, so I felt it important for you to know that something as simple as a forum comment can possess the power to make a difference. So thanks.

  25. G-Man Not scolding anyone. I would usually laugh it off. I guess it was one of those day it just hit me the wrong.
    I guess we need to take time once in a while to vent even if it is about vacations.I certainly understand your need to keep the record straight. God knows there is enough garbage flying around in the media now days.
    Thanks for your comments……

  26. @ Mc Ruger: You are absolutely correct to scold us over our commentary that is without a doubt ridiculously insignificant when compared to the severity of the issues of the day. I think it important that you be acknowledged that your efforts are duly noted.

    And while I am a guilty party to some of this dialogue, please know that as I type my responses, I too feel as you do about the absurdity that creeps into the content in contrast to the grave realities we currently face.

    However, I also feel that when someone replies with irresponsible anecdotes that are nowhere near factual, I become concerned that a younger or more impressionable reader may be persuaded to regard such things as fact and possibly even spread them as truth.

    Based on this, I feel it my duty to directly refute such statements at every turn in order to correct the record. Rarely will you ever find me starting such ludicrous banter, but often you find me finishing it.

    I hope you understand.

  27. This is the single most important issue facing the country right now….. WHO TOOK THE MOST VACATIONS AND WHO SPENT THE MOST MONEY ON VACATION.
    Is it any wonder the country is in the shape it is in?
    HALF THE MIDDLE EAST IS IN WAR, RUSSIANS SHOOTING DOWN COMMERCIAL AIRCRAFT, 100 MILLION DOLLARS SPENT TO HOUSE 80,000 ILLEGALS. BENGHASI, IRS, OBAMA CARE, GUN CONTROL NUTS, FAST AND FURIOUS, SPYING ON AMERICANS, KILLING AMERICANS WITHOUT DUE PROCESS, CHRISTIANS BEING THROWN OUT OF THERE HOMES BY ISIS TELLING THEM CONVERT OR DIE.
    BUT HELL YEAH LETS ARGUE ABOUT PRESIDENTIAL VACATIONS.

  28. @ Benny: For something to be considered a fact it must be indisputably absolute. Such was not the case in your comments regarding presidential vacationing expenses.

    First off in order to properly lay “all the facts on the table”, there are only two official categories of travel for the President, First Lady, and Vice President: They are either Official or Political. There is a third category known as Unofficial, but is reserved for very unique circumstances and rarely if ever used.

    There is no category for presidential vacations and since vacations cannot be considered Political, they must always be classified as Official Travel and therefore are provided at no cost to the President.

    In contrast to another of your statements, the President has no option as to the manner in which he flies, and therefore will ALWAYS fly on Air Force One. So there will never be an instance for him to decide, as you put it – “if he plans on flying there on AF1.” He will always be on Air Force One. This of course excludes short helicopter flights aboard Marine One.

    There is a hint of reality to your statement about paying air fees, but it never applies to the President, and most certainly will never be the cost of a “1st class airplane ticket”, as you’ve described it.

    Instead, the facts are that prior to 2010 there was an expectation that on Political designated Air Force One flights, the affiliated political party would later reimburse the government commensurate with regular airfare fees based on the normal commercial rates to specific destinations.

    The fees were tallied based on a head count of only the political staffers on board each flight, and never applied to the President or his staff. In any event, there was never a first class ticket fee because the 89th Airlift Wing which manages Air Force One is not a commercial airline.

    Subsequent to 2010 Obama made a new rule come into play where the procedures towards Political flights shifted to a chartered plane based model rather than a head count. However, the rules allow for the mixing of trips as Official and Political thus making reimbursement for the Political portions quite convoluted and hard to track. As you can imagine, most Presidents can take advantage of such confusion and they are never audited.

    Why no audit? These rules I’ve mentioned are set by the Executive Office of the President to begin with, and are merely a courtesy if followed. It is entirely based on an honor system and not subject to GAO audits.

    As a general rule, the Executive Travel Guidance is not made available to the general public and it is considered presidential privilege. Not even Congress dare question them or their own president one day may become open to scrutiny by opposing parties. It is simply an unwritten code that has always been left alone.

    And no, you may not lump preparations and security together. They are two distinctly separate costs to the tax payer that vary widely based on the destination decided upon by the President. The funding is allocated much differently as well. For example, travel overseas must be paid for by the State Department and travel within the U.S. is paid for by the White House.

    Prepping and conducting bare-base security costs millions more as in the Obama destinations as opposed to the frequented destinations by Bush.

  29. Hopefully, this will fall in the appellate courts, if it ever gets that far.

    I am somewhat curious how they are going to enforce the ‘owe money to Kalashnikov Concern” part. Are they going to sequester any money sent from the US to them?

    If ‘gun control’ was the goal here, I don’t think he realizes the number of AK47 manufacturers there are or how many Russia/Chinese/etc AKs there are in the secondary market. It’s a global marketplace. It is virtually impossible to ‘outlaw’ any type of firearm by sanctions as most are manufactured at multiple locations.

    Next week, Obama will want to cozy up to the Russians over or something. The sanctions will go out the window. I don’t know whether it is fortunate or unfortunate, but most people I know don’t care about the Ukraine or believe we can control what Putin does.

    This an attempt at an incremental change. I just don’t see how punishing Russia over the Ukraine is an overwhelming ‘state interest’ when it comes to the second amendment.

  30. As long as this AK-47 ban is temporary and tied with the other sanctions I don’t have a problem with it. We are trying to force Russia to stop bullying Ukraine. That means eventually ALL of their industries should be boycotted. Guarantee they will be hurting long before the U. S. will. I can live with the temporary inconvenience of not having AK-47 parts as long as it is temporary.

  31. @ Jimmy.

    It’s for training usage only sir. What do you think the Army said to themselves, Let’s order 600,000-magazines. So we can deprive Jimmy, from buying any of these FINE magazines. Us your brain, THINK. The Military use’s more Ammunition for the purpose of Training ALL-YOU KNUCKLE-HEADS then they do in Combat.

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