Five coups, as well as disputes over election results and allegations of corruption, led to a rise in civil unrest and political instability across the region, resulting in an average deterioration across the region in the political terror indicator of 6.9 per cent.
2022 Global Peace Index: Sub-Saharan Africa
Mauritius is the most peaceful country in the region, ranked 28th in the 2022 GPI. The country recorded a slight improvement of 1.3 per cent in its GPI score. For the second consecutive year, the country experienced increased violent demonstrations after citizens continued to protest against the handling of a massive oil spill in August 2020 and alleged corruption and fraud within the government.
On the other hand, South Sudan remains the least peaceful country in the region and one of the least peaceful countries in the world, despite an improvement in peacefulness in the 2022 GPI. Although levels of internal conflict in the country remain high, the number of deaths from the conflict improved by 15 per cent in 2022.
The largest improvement in peacefulness in the region occurred in Zambia, which recorded a 3.9 per cent improvement in its GPI score. This was largely driven by an improvement in Zambia’s relationship with its neighbours and a 17 per cent fall in military expenditure as a percentage of GDP.
In contrast, Burkina Faso experienced the second largest fall in peacefulness in the region, with deteriorations in all three domains primarily influenced by a coup in January 2022. The military detained President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, citing the deteriorating security situation amid the government’s inability to manage the deepening Islamic insurgency as the reason for this action.
Burkina Faso is also the third most impacted country in the world by terrorism with the 2022 Global Terrorism Index, as it registered the second highest number of deaths from terrorist attacks of any country in 2021.
2022 Global Peace Index: Summary
Iceland remains the most peaceful country, a position it has held since 2008. It is joined at the top of the index by New Zealand, Ireland, Denmark and Austria.
Afghanistan is the least peaceful country in the world for the fifth consecutive year, followed by Yemen, Syria, Russia and South Sudan. These countries have been among the ten least peaceful countries for the last three years.