All of the Chagos Islands are nature reserves. The following islands are strict nature reserves:
Great Chagos Bank: The Three Brothers and Resurgent Island
Peros Banhos Atoll: All the islands to the east of a line drawn between the easternmost point of land on Moresby Island and the easternmost point of land on Fouquet Island.
It is an offence under BIOT law to approach within 200 meters, land on or anchor at any of the strict nature reserves.
Timetable for permit applications
Applications for permits should be submitted as far in advance as possible, but not more than 6 months in advance. The applicant should expect a reply from the Administration within 10 working days after payment is received.
Obtaining application forms
Application forms and guidance notes can be obtained by clicking on the documents below or by contacting:
British Indian Ocean Territory Administration
Overseas Territories Directorate
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
London, SW1A 2AH
Telephone: + 44 (0) 20 7008 2890 or 2691
Fax: + 44 (0) 20 7008 1589
ANY PERSON WHO ENTERS BIOT WITHOUT A PERMIT IS LIABLE TO IMPRISONMENT FOR 3 YEARS AND/OR A FINE OF £3000.
Fondest memory: BRITISH INDIAN OCEAN TERRITORY LAWS AND GUIDANCE FOR VISITORS
Application forms BRITISH INDIAN OCEAN TERRITORY VISITORS
permits needed to visit BIOT?
Under the 1966 Exchange of Notes between the United Kingdom and the United States, the whole Territory is set aside for defence purposes. Therefore restrictions on access to the area apply.
Under the British Indian Ocean Territory (Immigration) Order 2004 '… no person shall enter the Territory or be present there unless he is in possession of a permit …'.
Persons requiring permits
All persons, except those who are connected to the military facility on Diego Garcia, require permits to visit BIOT. Any permit issued covers access to the islands of Territory, except Diego Garcia and those designated as strict nature reserves (see below).
Fondest memory: The outer islands of BIOT are only accessible by sea. There is no civilian air service.
Permits are not required by fishing vessels who must apply for a specific fishing licence from and pay a fee to the BIOT Fisheries Management Company:
18 Queen Street
Tel: + 44 (0) 20 7255 7755
Update 4th of July 2007 28 June - The London High Court last month ruled that the 2,000 expelled islanders must be allow to return I think this is the 4th time the high court has ruled in favor of the Chagossians but the British government appealed which will force at least a one year maybe one century delay in the return.
Fondest memory: Standard blue lagoon
Favorite thing: Keep in mind -- The British representative is in charge of customs and immigration. One can only enter Diego Garcia in a "serious emergency". Boats that try to enter can and most likly will be stopped outside the main pass and searched by the Navy. If an emergency stop is being made, it is best to radio the BIOT using VHF Channel 16, while approaching the island, and advise them of the nature of the emergency. When you stop at the other Island once or twice a month a BIOT patrol boat will pass by sometimes they kick you out others they charge about $100 anchor fee
Friday, December 21, 2001; Washington Post
A group of indigenous people who say they were forced from their archipelago when the United States assumed control of Diego Garcia and the Chagos Islands in the 1960s sued the government in U.S. District Court yesterday, alleging genocide, torture and forced relocation.
The class action was filed by some of the more than 1,000 people who had lived in the isolated chain of islands in the Indian Ocean until the United States acquired control of the territory from British colonial rule in 1965. They are asking for millions of dollars of damages.
The United States uses the island -- more than 1,000 miles from India, Mauritius, Australia and the Gulf States -- as a communications post and refueling station. The Chagossians charge that the agreement with the British says "acquisition of Diego Garcia for defense purposes will imply displacement of the whole of the existing population of the island." The Chagossians say U.S. military and contract workers forced them from the island in the late '60s and early '70s. The last movement of people was accomplished by herding them onto boats loaded with horses and other animals for a six-day voyage to Mauritius.
Fondest memory: VIDEO of the History of the People of the British Indian Ocean Territory
In 2001 The British allow 100 Chagosians or Îlois, to visit their cemetery.
Very nice Video from UK TV on the CHAGOS ISLANDERS