The history of Jews in Mongolia dates back to the end of the 19th century, as trade between Siberian-Jewish merchants and Mongolians resulted in some Jewish families settling on the Mongolian side of the border. By 1920, a small Jewish community, almost entirely of Russian origin, had formed in Outer Mongolia, fleeing persecution and the violence of the Russian Civil War. The community was quite successful, and some members of the community were even elevated to Mongolian nobility. However, Russian anti-Bolshevik forces that had retreated into Mongolia after being defeated in Central Asia, deported the community from Mongolia in 1921.
It was not until four years later, in 1925, that another Jewish community would appear in Mongolia. Once again, it largely consisted of Russian Jews who had left Russia for their own safety and settled in a relatively remote region of Mongolia; this time the community was situated approximately 200 miles from the Manchurian border. Shortly after, the community settled in then-Urga (modern-day Ulaanbaatar) due to increased Soviet actions in Outer Mongolia, which soon became a Soviet satellite. Some fled to Manchuria, while those in the city, worked mainly as watchmakers, jewelers, barbers, furriers, and construction workers.
Around this period, Mongolia became a Soviet satellite state, and as a result, all religion, including Judaism, was forbidden. Many of the Jewish families became assimilated, intermarrying with the native Mongolians. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, many Jews left Mongolia to pursue better economic opportunities in countries such as Israel.
Today, there are only a few Jews living in Mongolia, mainly for business or commercial interests. Though Judaism is not officially recognized as a religion by the Mongolian government, persecution and discrimination towards Jews is almost non-existent in Mongolia. In 2003, the Mongol-Jewish Cooperation, a Jewish interest group, was formed with the hopes that it would facilitate a greater interest in Israel and Judaism in the country.