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Terrorism Deaths Decline for Second Year

This is a featured organizational post on PCDN

In welcome news, for the second consecutive year, the total number of terrorism deaths is down. The Global Terrorism Index, which was released today, shows a 22 per cent reduction in terrorism deaths compared to the peak of terror activity in 2014. Four of the five countries most impacted by terrorism – Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria – collectively recorded 33 per cent fewer deaths.

However, ISIL defied this positive trend killing 50 per cent more people in 2016 as compared to 2015. In fact last year was their deadliest to-date with over 9,000 deaths, primarily in Iraq. Total deaths attributed to ISIL in Iraq increased by 50 per cent in 2016 and Iraq was ranked as the country most impacted by terrorism.

ISIL has also been the primary driver behind an increase in terrorism in developed countries. There has been a 67 per cent increase in attacks and a nearly 600 per cent increase in deaths from terrorism since 2014. But many of these deaths resulted from a small number of attacks that inflicted very high casualties. Further, in what appears to be an encouraging trend, the preliminary data for 2017 suggests ISIL killed fewer people in Europe and other developed countries this year. This apparent decline coincides with ISIL’s diminishing capacity following its territorial losses in Iraq and Syria.

Globally, a key finding of the report shows that 99 per cent of all terrorism deaths in the past 17 years have occurred in countries that either are in conflict or have high levels of political terror. This finding demonstrates the risks associated with counterterrorism strategies that can exacerbate existing grievances that fuel extremism and terrorism.

To access interactive maps on the Global Terrorism Index and to view the full report go to http://visionofhumanity.org .

This article is produced by the Institute for Economics & Peace and has been published under a Creative Commons Licence and may be republished with attribution.

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