The Zastava M70 is a Cold War-era infantry assault rifle with a rich history of service in multiple conflicts. It was developed in the late 1960s by the Yugoslav Zastava Arms Factory and has been utilized in significant battles, including the Gulf War, Yugoslav War, Kosovo War, and even the 2011 Libyan civil war. Inspired by Soviet designs like the AK-47, the M70 closely resembled the earlier Yugoslav M64 but later evolved into a more modern version known as the "M70."
The M70 is often compared to the iconic AK-47, featuring a rectangular receiver, a fire selector, and a magazine well in front of the trigger assembly. It fired the Soviet 7.62x39mm rifle cartridge, had a rate of fire of 620 rounds per minute, and an effective range of about 1,300 feet. The rifle's weight was around 8 pounds. Various iterations of the M70 were developed, differing in receiver manufacturing processes and stock types, with some having folding stocks that folded under the receiver.
Despite its subtle differences from the AK-47, the M70 has remained a reliable and enduring weapon. It is also known by names like "Yugo M70" and "Yugo AK" and served as the foundation for the "M76" sniper rifle, which used a different cartridge, the 7.92x57mm Mauser, instead of the Soviet 7.62mm rifle cartridge.
Year in Service: 1970
Manufacturer: Zastava Arms - Yugoslavia
Operator: Afghanistan; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Croatia; Cyprus; Iraq; Montenegro; Macedonia; Serbia; Slovenia.
Has mechanical features to automate the firing process.
A modern class of long guns with selected fire characteristics, automatic internals and magazine feeding.
Overall Length: 875mm (34.45 inches)
Barrel length: 415mm (16.34 inches)
Cured weight: 8.16 lbs (3.70 kg)
This system uses an internal mechanism to lock the breech or rear barrel assembly prior to firing.
Proposes a pneumatic system that typically consists of a cylinder and a rear drive piston that directs power to the bolt assembly.
Circle/Feed: Removable 30-round magazine
Maximum efficiency: 1,344 feet (410m | 448m)
Rate of fire: 620 Number of revolutions
Mile speed: 2,361 ft/s (720m/s)