Asia and Oceania

British Indian Ocean Territory (British Overseas Territory) Flag of British Indian Ocean Territory

Last Updated: 8 August 2007

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Map: British Indian Ocean Territory

Status: British Overseas Territory
Area: 54,400 sq km (mostly ocean)
Population: To give effect to the decision that the islands should be set aside for the defence purposes of the UK and the USA, the Chagos Archipelago, together with certain islands in the Seychelles group, were detached in 1965 from Mauritius and Seychelles and the settled inhabitants, some 1,200 persons, were subsequently relocated to those two countries. Since then, the only inhabitants have been UK and US military personnel and civilian contract employees, all living on Diego Garcia. In November 2004, these numbered approximately 4,000 persons. (The islands that had been detached from Seychelles were returned to Seychelles in 1976).
Capital City: N/A
Languages: English
Currency: UK£ (US$ accepted)
Major political parties: N/A
Commissioner: Mr Leigh Turner (since July 2006)
Administrator: Mr Tony Humphries (since February 2005)
Commissioner's Representative: Officer commanding the British Forces complement on Diego Garcia.

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Useful Links



British Indian Ocean Territory


Overseas Territories Department
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
London SW1A 2AH


020 7008 2890


020 7008 1589

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