Last Updated: Monday, 19 February 2018, 14:34 GMT

Global Overview 2012: People internally displaced by conflict and violence - Bangladesh

Publisher Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC)
Publication Date 29 April 2013
Cite as Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC), Global Overview 2012: People internally displaced by conflict and violence - Bangladesh, 29 April 2013, available at: [accessed 20 February 2018]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.
Number of IDPsUndetermined
Percentage of total populationUndetermined
Start of displacement situation1973
Peak number of IDPs (year)667,000 (2000)
New displacement in 2012At least 5,000
Causes of displacementx International armed conflict
x Internal armed conflict
✓ Deliberate policy or practice of arbitrary displacement
✓ Communal violence
x Criminal violence
x Political violence
Human development index146

No recent information was available on the number of people internally displaced as a result of armed conflict and violence in Bangladesh. IDPs are widely dispersed, and the fact that internally displaced Bengalis are not always counted also makes estimating figures difficult.

In September 2012, dozens of people were injured and more than 100 houses and shops burned down during communal violence between Bengalis and non-Bengalis in the south-eastern Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) region. Around 1,000 non-Bengali families, or 5,000 people, were reported to have been internally displaced.

Tensions between Bengalis, the majority community, and non-Bengali tribal people known as Jumma go back to the 1970s. After independence in 1971, Jumma living in CHT demanded greater autonomy. The government rejected their demands, and in 1973 armed conflict broke out between the national army and Shanti Bahini, the armed wing of the United People's Party of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (PCJSS). At the same time, the government settled Bengalis from the country's central plains in CHT.

A peace accord was signed in 1997, which provided for cultural recognition and partial self-government for the Jumma, the withdrawal of the army, an end to the settlement of Bengalis in CHT and the rehabilitation of the several hundred thousand IDPs. The agreement, however, was still to be fully implemented as of the end of 2012. Acts of violence and discrimination continued and land disputes remained unresolved. Neither the government's task force on returning refugees and IDPs nor the country's land commission met their objectives. The government also criticised the international community's involvement in the CHT issue and increased its control over international donations for Bangladeshi NGOs.

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