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Mangyongbong-92 at Wonsan in 2010
Chosŏn'gŭl 만경봉 92호
Hancha 萬景峰 92號
Revised Romanization Man-gyeongbong 92(gusibi)-ho
McCune–Reischauer Man'gyŏngbong kusibi ho

The Mangyongbong-92, named after a hill near Pyongyang, is a passenger ferry built in 1992 to celebrate the North Korean leader, Kim Il Sung's 80th birthday. The ferry was built with funds from Chongryon, the pro-Pyongyang General Association of Korean Residents in Japan. It is the only direct connection between North Korea and Japan.[1]

School children pass Mangyongbong-92 in North Korea.


The ferry makes 20 to 30 trips per annum between Niigata, Japan and Wonsan, North Korea. A typical journey lasts about 28 hours. It is mainly used by Zainichi Koreans visiting relatives in North Korea, and for school trips by Korean schools in Japan.


In 2003, the ferry became an object of suspicion in Japan [1], with allegations that it was being used to transport North Korea's missile parts, made by a North Korean defector to a US Senate committee. The allegations were denied by So Chung-on, the head of Chongryon's foreign affairs bureau, and so far remain unsubstantiated.[2]

Japanese ban[edit]

On July 5, 2006, Japan banned the ferry from entry because North Korea test-fired Taepodong-2 missiles which fell into the Sea of Japan (East Sea of Korea according to the North Korean government).[3]

That same year, a North Korean defector testified before the United States Senate saying that 90% of the parts North Korea was using to assemble this missile was transferred from Japan via the Mangyongong-92.[4]


  • Weight: 9,672 tonnes
  • Length: 162.1 m
  • Width: 20.5 m
  • Speed: 23 knots
  • No. of Passengers: 220


  1. ^ "Mangyongbong 92, A North Korean Ferry". InterQ, a subsidiary of GMO Internet Group LLC. 2001-08-04. 
  2. ^ Buckley, Sarah (2003-06-09). "N Korea ferry struggling against the tide". BBC News. Retrieved 2010-06-15. 
  3. ^ "Seventh missile launched: report". Sydney Morning Herald. 2006-07-04. 
  4. ^ Buckley, Sarah (2003-06-09). "N Korea ferry struggling against the tide". BBC News. Retrieved 2010-06-15.