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Brazil’s Global Peace Ranking is Bad (74th). But the US’s Is Much Worse (82nd)

Crowded prison in Brazil Brazil appears in 74th place in a list ranking peace and social justice in 153 countries,  The Global Peace Index released this Wednesday, May 25, by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP). Despite the low ranking, Brazilian went up  nine places when compared to last year’s ranking. It’s the nation’s best finish since 2007.

Even so, the country still lags behind Egypt, Nicaragua, Morocco and Tunisia, countries that had recent popular uprisings.

The GPI ranks countries using 23 indicators and based on eight different criteria including good functioning of government, sound business environment, fair distribution of resources, acceptance of third party rights, good relations with neighboring countries, freedom of information, good education and low level of corruption.

Brazil got some good grades for some indicator such as political stability, tolerance to foreigners, internal conflicts and relations with foreign countries, But the country still suffers with a disproportionate high rate of crime, lack of respect for human rights, widespread use of firearms, and endemic corruption.

In previous years, Brazil had occupied the following placements in the index:  2007 with 143 countries (83rd place), 2008, 140 nations (90th), 2009, 144 (85th) and 83rd place in 2010 among 143 countries.

In Latin America, Brazil occupies the ninth place. Uruguay is still the most peaceful country for the second consecutive year in the region. Uruguay is rated in position 21 in the list headed by Iceland.

In Latin America Uruguay is followed by Costa Rica (31); Chile (39); Panama (49), Argentina (55) and Paraguay (66).

Other Latin American countries in the annual list are Cuba (67), Bolivia (76), Peru (85), Ecuador (90), Dominican Republic (91), El Salvador (102) and Haiti (113).
Among the countries less peaceful in the region are Honduras (117), Mexico (121), Venezuela (124), Guatemala (125) and Colombia (139).

Globally the world has been described as “less peaceful” in 2011 because of global terrorism and violent protests, points out the Global Peace report.

The top countries for peace are Iceland, New Zealand, Japan, Denmark, Czech Republic, Austria, Finland, Canada, Norway, Slovenia.

The United States ranks 82 for 2011, up from 96th place in 2007. High rates of incarceration and violent crime are preventing the U.S. from reaping its potential peacefulness dividend in economic activity, says the report.

Reducing the number of prisoners, improving relations with neighboring countries and making sure the rule of law has a place might save countries around the world as much as US$ 8 trillion a year, asserts the survey.

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