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Kalashnikov's Former Office to Become a Museum

Russia's largest arms manufacturer, the Kalashnikov Group, plans to turn the office of the late legendary gun designer Mikhail Kalashnikov into a small museum.

"This is for the education of our youth, whom we'll bring to the plant," Kalashnikov head Konstantin Busygin said.

Mikhail Kalashnikov, a former Soviet general and the creator of the world's most popular firearm, died on Monday in Izhevsk, Udmurtia, at 94 years of age following a prolonged, unspecified illness.

Kalashnikov had recently been admitted to an intensive care unit at a hospital in Izhevsk, after undergoing heart surgery in June.

Kalashnikov will likely be buried at a cemetery in his native Izhevsk on Dec. 26 to allow time for foreign guests to make their way to the republic, a spokesman for Udmurtia's top official said Tuesday.

Izhevsk already has a museum dedicated to Kalashnikov, opened in 2004, with a gun range where visitors can fire air gun copies of AK series weapons.

The Kalashnikov Group, which still manufactures derivatives of the AK-47 and produces 95 percent of Russia's small arms, said it may also create a memorial plaque and establish an award in Kalashnikov's name to honor the arms manufacturer's best branches and employees.

An estimated 100 million Kalashnikov assault rifles have been built since the weapon first went into mass production in February 1947.

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