A wide range of factors drove the fall in peacefulness over the past decade including increased terrorist activity, the intensification of conflicts in the Middle East, rising regional tensions in Eastern Europe and northeast Asia, increasing numbers of refugees, and heightened political tensions in Europe and the US.
This deterioration was partially offset by improvements in many of the measures of the Militarisation domain of the GPI.
The average country score improved by -0.09 per cent, with 86 countries improving and 76 recording deteriorations.
Iceland remains the most peaceful country in the world, a position it has held since 2008.
It is joined at the top of the index by New Zealand, Austria, Portugal, and Denmark.
Bhutan has recorded the largest improvement of any country in the top 20, rising 43 places in the last 12 years.Although long-term quantitative data on the interactions of climate and peace is scarce, what is available suggests that climate has played a role in triggering or exacerbating conflict through its effects on livelihood security and resource availability.The effects of climate shocks on factors such as resource scarcity, livelihood security and displacement can greatly increase the risk of future violent conflict, even when climate change does not directly cause conflict.Europe maintained its position as the most peaceful region in the world, which it has held for every year of the GPI.MENA remained the least peaceful region for the fifth year in a row, although it did become more peaceful last year.Afghanistan is now the least peaceful country in the world, replacing Syria, which is now the second least peaceful.South Sudan, Yemen, and Iraq comprise the remaining five least peaceful countries.The Asia-Pacific and South Asia regions collectively house twice as many people in high exposure climate zones as all other regions combined.A risk assessment carried out by the Index for Risk Management in 2019 found that South Asia, Asia-Pacific and Central America and the Caribbean have weaker coping capacities and higher risk to natural hazards as compared to other regions.There has been a consistent reduction in military expenditure as a percentage of GDP for the majority of countries, as well as a fall in the armed services personnel rate for most countries in the world.The economic impact of violence on the global economy in 2018 amounted to .1 trillion in constant purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.