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Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries in the World

What are the safest, most peaceful countries in the world? As the world around us seems to have plunged into chaos, with the news being plastered with information about terrorist attacks, hate crimes, and armed conflicts, it’s important to keep in mind that there are numerous places that can be considered the safest, most peaceful countries in the world.

The world is in a continuous flux of change, with conflicts being born everywhere, while others die down, giving the population the chance to recover and rebuild. Over the past few years, there have been a few nations that have remained among the top 50 peaceful countries in the world, while others have slipped down the ranks due to involvement in conflicts around the world and the general crime statistics of the nation.

For instance, the most peaceful country in the world in 2015 was Iceland, a country that continues to occupy a spot among the top even now. If you’re interested, you can also check out the safest countries for expats, especially if you’re planning on moving. Also, you might want to take a look at the cheapest and safest places to live in the world.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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To create our list today with the most peaceful countries in 2017 we checked out the Global Peace Index rankings since there’s no better way to tell than that. Wondering which is the most peaceful country in Asia? Well, that’s simple, as the land where Lord of the Rings was filmed can’t possibly fare badly, which makes New Zealand the top nation in the Asia-Pacific area on the peaceful score. What about Africa? Which are the most peaceful countries in Africa, you wonder? Well given the rather sensitive situation in the area, it’s actually good to see a few nations scoring quite high, such as Mauritius, Botswana, and Sierra Leone.

The Global Peace Index ranking takes into consideration multiple criteria in order to create a list. For instance, it takes a look at the level of perceived criminality in society, but also at the number of police officer per 100,000 people, and the number of homicides per 100,000 people. The ease of access to guns and the number of people in jail are also taken into consideration, alongside the intensity of organized internal conflicts and the level of violent crime, the political instability, and the political terror scale. Terrorist incidents are also weighted in, which is an important factor given the current situation in the world.

When it comes to external peace indicators for the nations on the list of the most peaceful countries in the world, the rankings take into consideration the military expenditure as a percentage of GDP, the financial contribution to UN peacekeeping missions or the number of armed services personnel per 100,000 people. The nuclear and heavy weapons capabilities also play a role, as well as the guns exports, the relations with neighboring countries and the role in external conflicts.

For example, the world’s most peaceful nation has a score of 1.111, while the least peaceful country in the world, Syria, has a score of 3.814, ranking 163rd. For those who are wondering how the United States fares, you should know that it ranks 114th, with a score of 2.232. We also went and checked multiple crime indexes on Knoema, such as homicides, assaults, burglaries, robberies, rape, and kidnapping. We added them all together and divided the number by the number of indexes they each had scores for, since they were not all present on all lists from lack of data. Finally, we added together the number we got there with the rank on the Global Peace Index list.

Without further ado, here are the top 25 safest, most peaceful countries in the world.

25. Ghana

Total Score: 48

GPI Score: 1.793 (43rd)

Safety Score: 72 (5th)

First up on our list is Ghana, a country whose peace index score helped it climb up a position in the past year. The number of homicides taking place here has helped it up a bit among the other nations.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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24. Madagascar

Total Score: 48

GPI Score: 1.797 (44th)

Safety Score: 73.2 (4th)

We’re moving towards Madagascar next, a country that ranks 44th on the GPI list, down six spots from last year’s list. The country ranks 6th among Sub Saharan nations.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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23. New Zealand

Total Score: 46

GPI Score: 1.241 (2nd)

Safety Score: 25.6 (44th)

Next up is mesmerizing New Zealand, a place that’s far more peaceful than the Middle Earth. Going up two spots since last year, New Zealand is the most peaceful country in the Asia-Pacific area.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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22. Sierra Leone

Total Score: 46

GPI Score: 1.760 (39th)

Safety Score: 71 (7th)

Up next on our list of the safest, most peaceful countries in the world, we have Sierra Leone, whose GPI score went down slightly from last year but helped the country hop up four spots.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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21. Poland

Total Score: 46

GPI Score: 1.676 (33rd)

Safety Score: 57 (13th)

Up next on our list of safest, most peaceful countries in the world is a European country, namely Poland, who ranks 33rd on the Global Peace Index list. The levels of all types of crimes across the country give it the 13th best score on our list.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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20. Ireland

Total Score: 45

GPI Score: 1.408 (10th)

Safety Score: 37.2 (35th)

Ireland is the country that ties with Japan for the tenth spot among the safest, most peaceful country in the world, going up two spots from last year.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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19. Canada

Total Score: 44

GPI Score: 1.371 (8th)

Safety Score: 36.3 (36th)

Canada, the other country in North America aside from the United States is the polar opposite of its neighbor. Occupying the eighth spot for the past couple of years, Canada is faring exceptionally well when it comes to keeping the peace. In fact, the country’s score has improved in recent years, but given the US’s score, it hasn’t managed to offset in any way the loss in points suffered by the continent.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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18. Malaysia

Total Score: 44

GPI Score: 1.637 (29th) 

Safety Score: 52.3 (15th)

Next up on our list of the safest, most peaceful countries in the world, we have Malaysia whose peace score puts it on the 29th spot on the global index.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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17. Croatia

Total: Score: 43

GPI Score: 1.665 (31st)

Safety Score: 57 (12th)

Up next is another European country – Croatia. The nation’s score went down a slight bit since last year on the Global Peace Index, but it has kept the same spot.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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16. United Kingdom

Total Score: 43

GPI Score: 1.786 (41st)

Safety Score: 93 (2nd)

The UK is up next on our list. Compared to last year, the country has gone up 6 places on the Global Peace Index list. It’s also faring quite ok when it comes to the number of murders per 100,000 citizens and general crime rate, compared to other nations.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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15. Finland

Total Score: 41

GPI Rank: 1.515 (17th)

Safety Score: 48.3 (24th)

Finland is next on our list of the safest, most peaceful countries in the world after going down six spots from last year’s ranking. The country, much like its neighbors, has been dealing with a worsening relationship with Russia.

14. Taiwan

Total Score: 41

GPI Score: 1.782  (40th)

Safety Score: 94 (1st)

Next up on our list is Taiwan, a country that isn’t faring all that great on the Global Peace Index, although far better than the greater part of the list, with a score that falls in the “green” zone. The low crime levels in the area, however, make it one of the safest places.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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13. Denmark

Total Score: 38

GPI Score: 1.337 (5th)

Safety Score: 41.6 (33rd)

Denmark occupies the fifth place on our list of safest, most peaceful countries in the world, falling three spots from last year, mostly due to the impact of terrorism and a deterioration of the country’s relations with its neighbors.

12. Norway

Total Score: 37

GPI Score: 1.486 (14th)

Safety Score: 49.4 (23rd)

Another Nordic country is up next – Norway. Climbing three spots from last year’s rankings, Norway has also seen a worsening of its relations with Russia, although the aggression is kept to political speeches thus far.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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11. Hungary

Total Score: 37

GPI Score: 1.494 (15th)

Safety Score: 49.5 (22nd)

Hungary is next on our list of safest, most peaceful countries in the world, going up five spots since last year. Despite this success, Hungary is actually mentioned in the report as one of the nations where freedom of the press has deteriorated the most, alongside Greece and Turkey.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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10. Slovakia

Total Score: 35

GPI Score: 1.611 (26th)

Safety Score: 62.6 (9th)

Next up on our list is Slovakia, right from the center of Europe, next door to Hungary and Austria. The country’s GPI score worsened just slightly over the past year, but enough to push the country down two spots.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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9. Portugal

Total Score: 32

GPI Score: 1.258 (3rd)

Safety Score: 44.3 (29th)

Beautiful Portugal is on the third place among the safest, most peaceful countries in the world, up two spots from 2016. This is the highest ranking Portugal has seen since the index was first published after the country improved on 12 of the 23 indicators.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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8. Iceland

Total Score: 27

GPI Score: 1.111 (1st)

Safety Score: 48.2 (26th)

Next up, on the eight spot of our list, we find Iceland, a nation that’s used to ranking highest on the Global Peace Index list. After all, it’s been the world’s most peaceful country every year since 2008, occupying the same first place on that list. When it comes to the crimes taking place here, Iceland isn’t doing so good, so it loses a bit in the “safe department”

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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7. Singapore

Total Score: 24

GPI Score: 1.534 (21st)

Safety Score: 73.8 (3rd)

Singapore, the island city-state just south of Malaysia, occupies the next spot on our list of safest, most peaceful countries in the world. The nation has gone down two spots from last year, although it has maintained the same score. Furthermore, Singapore ranks fourth among the most peaceful countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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6. Czech Republic

Total Score: 23

GPI Score: 1.36 (6th)

Safety Score: 51.6 (17th)

The Czech Republic is known as one of the most beautiful countries in Europe. It also is one of the most peaceful nations on the planet, managing to keep the same rank it had last year. In fact, there’s been no change in its score in the past twelve months.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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5. Slovenia

Total Score: 23

GPI Score: 1.364 (7th)

Safety Score: 52.1 (16th)

Next up we have Slovenia, a country that has won three spots since last year. Slovenia is the European country that had the largest deterioration in the “Equitable Distribution of Resources” in the entire group, the authors of the report note.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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4. Switzerland

Total Score: 23

GPI Score: 1.373 (9th)

Safety Score: 54.6 (14th)

Switzerland is the next country on our list, down two spots from last year’s ranking. The country continues to be one of the most neutral nations, being the only European country on the list to have no tensions with neighbors or to have been recently involved in domestic and international conflicts.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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3. Bhutan

Total Score: 23

GPI Score: 1.474 (13th)

Safety Score: 58.6 (10th)

Bhutan is up next on our list of safest, most peaceful countries in the world, keeping the same spot it held last year. Bhutan, whose score actually worsened slightly since 2016, is the most peaceful country in South Asia. In the area, it’s obvious that Bhutan is an exception among its neighbors. The closest-ranking South-Asian nation is Sri Lanka which ranked 80th, while Afghanistan, which is also from the same area, ranks 162, second to last.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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2. Austria

Total Score: 22nd

GPI Score: 1.265 (4th)

Safety Score: 50.8 (18th)

Austria is up next, down one spot from last year. The biggest problems, it seems, stem from the rise of the far-right political parties here.

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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1. Japan

Total Score: 19

GPI Score: 1.408 (11th)

Safety Score: 70 (8th)

Finally, at the top of our list, we have Japan, a country that occupies the 10th spot on the Global Peace Index, after losing a spot since last year. The second most peaceful nation in the Asia Pacific area managed to take the spot among the world’s most peaceful countries, also in part thanks to the low crime rate. That being said, these have been the 25 safest, most peaceful countries in the world. 

Top 25 Safest, Most Peaceful Countries In The World

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