Baghdad Carbine: Iraq’s Super-Rare Copy of the Rasheed

In 1974, Iraq and Egypt were still on good relations, and Egypt sold Iraq a batch of 300 Rasheed carbines and the production tooling to manufacture them. Iraq quickly set up production and began making their own copy of the Rasheed in 1974 or 1975, named the “Baghdad”. Production ran until 1978, with about 9,000 or 10,000 carbines made.

Information about the Baghdad remains very scarce, and only a handful of the carbines are known to exist in the United States. The production total comes from looking at documented serial numbers, which run from 103,000 to 108,000. Clearly production began at 100,001, and never seems to have exceeded 110,000. The fate of the bulk of these guns remains a mystery today, as relatively few seem to be documented in Iraq and even fewer in the US. Were they destroyed for some reason? Do they survive in storage somewhere in Iraq, or perhaps Iran? We just don’t know.


  1. Given what options were available at the time you can certainly understand why Iraq would adopt these. I opine that, had they used AK mags, they’d be in use today.

    • Sure, but they could have kept scooping up Kalashnikovs on the global market until they were ready to reverse engineer and manufacture those. They could even have cut a deal with H&K, who will sell anything to anybody, for a complete assembly line for HK32s firing 7.62×39.

  2. Years ago I read that Iraq begun to buy the Yugo-SKS M59/66 in the middle of the 70th. That would explain, that they ended the production of this weapon.

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