Country of the World Diego Garcia

About the country Diego Garcia, its location, size, population, leaders and rulers.



Size: 11 sq. mi. (28.5 sq. km.).

Population: 1,400 U.S. military personnel and 25 British.

Diego Garcia is a small, horseshoe-shaped atoll in the middle of the Indian Ocean, about 1,000 mi. south of India's southern tip. It is flat, with heavy natural vegetation. Between 1971 and 1972, the British deported the resident islanders to Mauritius, where they are reported to be living in abject poverty. The deportation received no publicity in the U.S. or British press until 1975, when it was also revealed that the U.S. had secretly reimbursed the British to obtain base rights. In 1974, when the communications base was in full operation, the navy and air force sought funds to expand the port and airtrip, as well as the housing. Despite opposition from almost half the Senate, additional funds were approved. By 1977 the U.S. had a medium-sized base complex, capable of handling all U.S. aircraft but the B-52 bomber, and a port which could accommodate a complete aircraft carrier task force.

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