The People's Republic of Bangladesh is a country in South Asia. It is surrounded by India on all sides except for a small border with Myanmar to the far southeast and the Bay of Bengal, part of the Indian Ocean, to the south. Together with the Indian state of West Bengal, it makes up the ethno-linguistic region of Bengal. The name Bangladesh means "Country of Bengal" and is written as বাংলাদেশ and pronounced ['baŋlad̪eʃ] (help·info) in the official Bengali language.
Bangladesh is a product of the partitioning of British India starting with the 1947 partition which made it the eastern wing of Pakistan. This pairing based on common religion (Islam) proved geographically awkward, as a distance of some 1,600 kilometres (1,000 mi) separated the two regions. Subject to political and linguistic domination as well as economic neglect, Bengalis gained their independence in 1971 in a civil war with help from India. In spite of its liberation narrative, Bangladesh's development has since been marred by political turmoil, with fourteen different heads of government and at least four military coups.
Bangladesh is among the most highly and densely populated countries in the world. The population is generally poor, rural and Muslim. Geographically the country straddles the fertile Ganges-Brahmaputra Delta and is subject to annual monsoon floods and cyclones. The government is a secular parliamentary democracy which has been suspended under emergency law since January 2007. Bangladesh is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, SAARC, BIMSTEC, the OIC and the D-8.