The 2016 Global Peace Index (GPI) report has ranked China 120th out of 163 states and territories when it comes to its level of peacefulness. The index is a comprehensive statistical analysis of the “harmony achieved by the absence of violence or the fear of violence.” The panel of experts that oversaw this year’s edition includes independent researchers from New Zealand, Europe and Russia.
Launched in 2007 by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), the GPI takes into consideration 23 indicators belonging to three broad categories: “ongoing domestic and international conflict,” “societal safety and security,” and “militarization.” Of the three, China is least peaceful in terms of “societal safety and security,” managing a score of just 2.5, with 5 being the least peaceful. Of the 23 indicators, China scores the worst on “nuclear and heavy weapons” and scored the best in “internal conflicts fought” and “deaths from external conflict.” For more statistics, take a look at this interactive map.
Factors that made China “medium” peaceful include the always rising tensions in the South China Sea, as well as its large army and military expenditure. Last September, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that China would be cutting its troop levels by 300,000, or 13%. But, only a few days later China showed off all its latest military gear in a massive military parade through Tiananmen Square marking the 70th anniversary of China’s victory in the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression.
This year’s score is similar to last year’s, but China has experienced a drop in peacefulness since 2014, when it had a lower score of 2.234 and was ranked 110th in the world.
On a global scale, China scored between Ethiopia and Djibouti. It is less peaceful than the US (ranked 103rd) and more peaceful than many African and Middle Eastern countries. China’s good friend North Korea ranked 150th and their not so good friend Japan ranked 9th. Taiwan was 41st.
Here’s the 10 most peaceful countries:
4) New Zealand
6) Czech Republic
And the 10 least peaceful:
2) South Sudan
7) Central African Republic
By Amy Yang