Chagos Archipelago

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The Chagos Archipelago lies somewhat in the centre of the Indian Ocean, about 450 km south of the southernmost atoll of the Maldives. The 57 odd islands and atolls are part of the British Indian Ocean Territory. The only inhabitants are the people who are employed with the US and UK military facilities on Diego Garcia.

The Chagos Archipelago has atoll formations, submerged banks and reefs. It has the farthest group of atolls and islands on the Laccadive-Chagos Ridge, which also supports Lakshadweep and the Maldives.

As these islands are remotely located and fairly less inhabited, it has a good collection of reefs and other formations. The coral reef biodiversity here is said to be one of the highest among other Indian Ocean islands. The Green Turtle and the Hawksbill Turtles make these islands their breeding areas during the nesting season.