ABU DHABI, February 20. /TASS/. The operational evaluation of Kalashnikov AK-12 assault rifles for the Ratnik combat outfit will be completed in the Russian troops in the first half of this year, spokeswoman for the Kalashnikov Corporation Sofya Ivanova told TASS on Monday.
"It [the operational evaluation] continues and will be completed in the first half of 2017," the spokeswoman said at the IDEX-2017 international arms exhibition in Abu-Dhabi in reply to the corresponding question.
In turn, the chief executive of Russia’s R&D Institute of Precision Machine-Building (TsNIITochMash), the developer of the Ratnik combat gear, said at the Abu Dhabi exhibition that a decision to include the AK-12 assault rifle into the soldier’s outfit would be made in October this year after the operational evaluation was over.
"The tests are proceeding successfully so far," TSNIITochMash CEO Dmitry Semizorov said.
The deliveries of Ratnik combat outfits to Russian troops are proceeding as scheduled, he added.
"The contract is being fulfilled. Under the Ratnik program, actually everything has been put into service and is being supplied under existing contracts," the TSNIITochMash head said.
As was reported earlier, a sub-machinegun for the Ratnik combat outfit would be selected until the end of 2016. Two assault rifles, the AK-12 and the AEK-971, are undergoing an operational evaluation. Both sub-machineguns have passed preliminary trials.
The Ratnik outfit is being positioned as the soldier of the future combat gear. It comprises several dozen elements, including nine pieces of armament, as was reported earlier.