Country Listing

Bangladesh Table of Contents


Intelligence and Security


Bangladesh student officers at the Defence Services Command and Staff College pose with colleague from Nepal
Courtesy James Dunn

The military has been deeply involved in gathering domestic and foreign intelligence. All three services have their own intelligence directorates, which collect tactical intelligence to support military operations. The Directorate General of National Security Intelligence is a separate civilian organization but traditionally is headed by a senior military officer. It is responsible for collecting foreign intelligence and monitoring internal political affairs. The pivotal intelligence agency, however, is the Directorate General of Forces Intelligence. It monitors disaffection within the ranks and runs counterintelligence operations. The heads of the Directorate General of National Security Intelligence and the Directorate General of Forces Intelligence are usually the president's closest advisers. The Police Special Branch also operates an intelligence wing, which augments both directorates' intelligence capabilities. Since assuming power in 1982, Ershad has exercised tight control over the intelligence establishment.

Another security organization is the Presidential Security Force. Formed by Ershad while he was chief martial law administrator, the organization's mission is to ensure the physical security of Ershad and his family. Because two of Ershad's predecessors were gunned down during army rebellions, Ershad was undoubtedly concerned over threats to his life. The commander of the Presidential Security Force is an army brigadier who reports directly to the president.

Data as of September 1988