People, State and Border: Examining Bangladesh-Myanmar Border Relations

Md. Shariful Islam, PhD

Delwar Hossain

a. Associate Professor of International Relations, Rajshahi University, Rajshahi, Bangladesh

b. Professor of International Relations, University of Dhaka, Dhaka, Bangladesh. E-mail:


Bangladesh has two immediate neighbors, India and Myanmar. Bangladesh shares both land and maritime border with Myanmar. After a long-standing maritime boundary delimitation dispute, Bangladesh and Myanmar resolved the dispute peacefully in 2012. However, Bangladesh-Myanmar land border often becomes a source of tension which often results in the killing of the members of the security forces and the innocent people. It is worthy to note that in September 2022, Myanmar mobilized troops on its border with Bangladesh. In addition, human trafficking, drugs trafficking, and arms trafficking are regular phenomenon in Bangladesh-Myanmar border. After August 2017 violence and torture by the Myanmar armies to the Rohingya people, more than 1.1 million Rohingyas fled Myanmar and took shelter in Bangladesh through Bangladesh-Myanmar border. Despite the existing challenges with severe implications, Bangladesh-Myanmar border issue has remained understudied. Against this backdrop, this article tries to understand border cooperation and challenges between Bangladesh and Myanmar.

Keywords: Bangladesh-Myanmar, border, border cooperation, border tension, maritime dispute, Rohingya, arms trafficking, drugs trafficking, landmines.