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Mantapsan is located in North Korea
Location of Mantapsan in North Korea
Highest point
Elevation2,205 m (7,234 ft)
Coordinates41°17′55″N 129°04′54″E / 41.29861°N 129.08167°E / 41.29861; 129.08167Coordinates: 41°17′55″N 129°04′54″E / 41.29861°N 129.08167°E / 41.29861; 129.08167
LocationKilju County, North Hamgyong Province, North Korea
Parent rangeHamgyong Mountains
Korean name
Revised RomanizationMantapsan

Mantapsan (or Mount Mant'ap, Chosŏn'gŭl: 만탑산) is a mountain in the south of North Hamgyong Province in North Korea.[1] The granite peak,[2] which reaches an elevation of 2,205 m (7,234 ft), is part of the Hamgyong Mountains. It is located on the border between Kilju County, Myŏnggan County and Orang County.

Political prisoners were reportedly forced to dig tunnels into the southern side of the mountain, at the nuclear test site near P'unggye-ri.[3] The horizontal tunnels are believed to be two to three meters wide and high and hundreds of meters long.[4] This is where the detonations of the North Korean nuclear tests in 2006, 2009, 2013 and 2016 occurred.[5]

International analysts believe that the sixth and largest explosion, to this date the last, "made the mountain bulge sideways by about 12 feet and collapse vertically by about a foot and a half", with one seismologist describing the subsequent reaction as the mountain "pancaking".[6]

Hwasong concentration camp, at 549 km2 (212 sq mi) the largest North Korean concentration camp,[7] is located between Mantapsan and Myŏnggan (Hwasŏng).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Geographic Names: Mant'ap-san". Geographic Org. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  2. ^ "Image shows inside of N.K. nuclear weapons test facility". The Korea Herald, February 4, 2013. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  3. ^ "The Terrible Secrets of N. Koreas Mount Mantap". Chosun Ilbo, June 3, 2009. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  4. ^ "The anatomy of North Korea's nuclear test tunnels released for the first time". The Hankyoreh, February 5, 2013. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  5. ^ "North Korean Nuclear Test Preparations: An Update". US-Korea Institute at SAIS, April 27, 2012. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  6. ^ Rachel Becker (May 10, 2018). ""How powerful was North Korea's last nuclear test? It moved a mountain"". The Verge. Retrieved May 11, 2018.
  7. ^ "The Hidden Gulag – Exposing Crimes against Humanity in North Korea's Vast Prison System" (PDF). The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea. pp. 78–79. Retrieved February 5, 2013.