South Africa has lost 29 places from its 98th position in 2007 on Vision of Humanity’s global peace index. However, one should keep in mind that the index for 2012 that was released in June included 158 countries while the 2007 index included 120 countries.
Overall the index showed an improvement in peacefulness for the first time since 2009. Excluding the Middle East and North Africa, likely due to the Arab Spring, all regions witnessed improvements in terms of overall peacefulness. However, Syria fell 30 places to 147th place and was the country with the largest margin.
Somalia was, for the second time, in the bottom of the index and Iceland was, also for the second time, in the top.
For the first time sub-Saharan Africa was not the least peaceful region but has instead increased its peacefulness since 2007.
The index is set up by the Institute for Economics and Peace and ranks 158 countries by using 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators that look at domestic and international conflicts, security, safety and marginalisation.
Mail & Guardian