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Bangladesh is a country in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides, Burma (Myanmar) on the southeast and the Bay of Bengal to its 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" in the official Bengali language.
The present-day borders of the country were established during the demise of the British Indian Empire in 1947, when Bengal was partitioned and the region became East Pakistan, part of the newly formed nation of Pakistan. However, it was separated from West Pakistan by 1,600 km of Indian territory. Due to political exclusion, ethnic and linguistic discrimination, and economic neglect by the politically dominant western wing, popular agitation and rising nationalism resulted in the War of Liberation in 1971. After independence, Bangladesh proclaimed a secular democratic republic. However, political turmoil in 1975 led to a sixteen year period of martial law and quasi-military rule. The restoration of democracy in 1991 has been followed by relative calm and economic progress.
Bangladesh is the world's eighth most populous country. The Bangladeshi republic is a parliamentary democracy, with an elected parliament called the Jatiyo Sangshad. The country straddles the fertile Ganges-Brahmaputra Delta, and has a historical and diverse cultural heritage. Despite a number of major challenges, including corruption and poverty, the country's economy has grown significantly since 1991, and per-capita income has doubled from 1975 levels. Bangladesh is identified as a Next Eleven economy, and is a member of SAARC, BIMSTEC, the OIC and the Commonwealth.