South Korea to sell 108,000 Garand Rifles to US Gun Collectors
SEOUL, Korea –-(AmmoLand.com)- South Korea's defense ministry said Wednesday it plans to raise tens of millions of dollars by selling more than 100,000 aging US-supplied rifles to gun enthusiasts in the United States.
Washington has approved South Korea's plan to sell about 86,000 M1 Garand rifles and 22,000 M1 carbine rifles, together valued at 108 million dollars, the ministry said.
The rifles used during the Korean and Vietnam wars have been kept at military warehouses, it said.
“The US government recently approved our plan to sell old M1 and carbine rifles, which were given to our soldiers as part of a US aid program,” a ministry spokesman told AFP.
The rifles are occasionally used by reserve forces for drills, he said without giving details.
The military will dispose of all its M1s but will keep about 640,000 carbines for reserve forces, the Chosun Ilbo newspaper said.
“Importers are very interested in them as many Americans want to buy them as curios for their collections,” an unidentified military official was quoted as saying.
M1s were made first in 1926 and used in World War II and the Vietnam War. The carbines were first produced in 1941 and used during the 1950-1953 Korean War.
South Korea provided the second-largest contingent of foreign troops in South Vietnam after its close ally, the United States.