Air Force Un: Kim Jong Un’s Private Jet

Kim Jong Un's_Il-62 Chammae

Kim Jong Un’s_Il-62 Chammae-1. Credit: CC/Raymond Cunningham

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un uses a Soviet-style private jet that is memorably dubbed as Air Force Un, in a style that is compared in scale to the U.S. Presidential jet Air Force One. The 174ft Soviet Ilyushin IL-62 is officially known as ‘Chammae-1’, or ‘Goshawk-1’ after the national bird (a native species of a hawk) of North Korea.

Kim’s official private jet plane is a remodelled version which can fly up to a maximum speed of 900 kilometres (560mph) with the capacity of 200 people. It was reportedly the world’s largest jet airliner in 1963 but can now sell for £65,000. The jet’s maximum flight range is said to be 9,200 kilometres (5,720 miles). However, it has never flown that far.

The remodelled private jet interiors have a full cabin fascia treatment and are plush with over-sized leather armchairs, crystal ashtrays, wood accouterments inclusive of large wooden tables. The Il-62 is adorned with a red-and-yellow national emblem and is ringed with the phrase ‘Chairman of the State Affairs Commission’, which is a moniker that is reportedly Kim’s main political title. The private jet is also equipped with a telephone, an intercom, a router, a colour monitor which displays the travel route. Despite the plush furnishings of the private jet, experts doubt the reliability aspect of the aircraft due to its age and questions over the private jet’s maintenance.

It is claimed that unlike the leader’s father Kim Jong-Il, who had a fear of flying and is said to have visited China and Russia in a private armoured train, Kim Jong-Un enjoys trying his hand at the controls of the plane. A senior government source had mentioned earlier that ‘Kim Jong-un likes steering aircraft.’

The leader also has created new runways besides a private palace in the eastern port city of Wonsan. The palace area is also home to Kim Jong Un’s private yachts, jet skis, and villas he uses to entertain friends and guests.

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