Country Listing

Bangladesh Table of Contents


National Security

Armed Forces: About 102,500 in 1988: army 90,000; navy 7,500; and air force 5,000.

Military Units: Most powerful and prestigious Ninth Infantry Division near Dhaka and Twenty-fourth Infantry Division at Chittagong. Other important infantry divisions at Rangpur, Jessore, Bogra, and Comilla--the latter two containing country's armor regiments.

Equipment: Army: Type 54/55 tanks, Chinese-made Type 59 main battle tanks, and Type 62 light tanks; 105mm and 122mm howitzers; 60mm and 120mm mortars; and 57mm, 76mm, and 106mm antitank weapons. Navy: Leopard-class Type 41 and Salisbury-class Type 61 frigates and more modern Chinese-made Hegu-class, P4-class, Hainan-class, and Shanghai II-class fast attack craft primarily for use in territorial waters. Air Force: three squadrons, comprising MiG-21s, Chinese-made F-6s and A-5s, Soviet An-26 transports, and Americanmade Bell 212 and Soviet Mi-8 helicopters.

Auxiliary Forces: Important supplement to armed forces. In 1988 consisted of 30,000-member Bangladesh Rifles, 20,000-member Ansars (security guards), and 5,000-member Armed Police, all subordinate to Ministry of Home Affairs. Used to extend governmental authority and ensure law and order in border and internal areas and backup to army in wartime. Village Defence Party of 10 million (males and females) largely involved in village security.

Data as of September 1988