Viktor Fyodorovich Karpukhin

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Viktor Fyodorovich Karpukhin
Born 27 October 1947
Lutsk, Soviet Union
Died 24 March 2003(2003-03-24) (aged 55)
Russia
Allegiance  Soviet Union
Awards Hero of the Soviet Union Order of Lenin

Viktor Fyodorovich Karpukhin (Russian: Виктор Фёдорович Карпухин; October 27, 1947 – March 24, 2003) was a member of the KGB who was instrumental in the Soviet war in Afghanistan.

He was born in the Ukrainian city of Lutsk. He joined the KGB's crack Alpha Group (AG) in 1967 and worked his way up to become its commander in 1988.

On December 23, 1979, Karpukhin led 38 soldiers of the AG, who along with 500 Soviet paratroopers, landed at Bagram airport, next to Kabul, Afghanistan. Two days later, 40,000 Soviet Army soldiers poured over the Afghan border.

Stationed in the Soviet embassy in Kabul, which was close to President Hafizullah Amin's palace, Karpukhin's forces awaited further instructions. On December 27, Karpukhin was ordered to take the presidential palace. In the attack, two Soviet soldiers were killed, and Amin was shot to death. The following day, Moscow favourite Prime Minister Babrak Karmal took Amin's seat as president. Karpukhin was awarded the Hero of the Soviet Union medal for his role.

Karpukhin retired from the Alpha Group in 1991, and worked in various government and commercial ventures.