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Outside of Lima | May 20, 2008 [ 15:15 ]

Iceland tops Global Peace Index, Peru 80th, U.S. 97th

Living in Peru
Israel J. Ruiz

Of a list of 140 nations, Peru is ranked 80 on the second annual Global Peace Index, a study organized by the non-governmental organization known as Vision of Humanity.

The study, which includes 24 criteria, ranks nations in terms of how peaceful they are.

Number of deaths from organized conflict, levels of violent crimes and percentage of the country's gross domestic product allocated for military spending were some of the factors used to determine the least and most peaceful countries in the world.

Iceland, dubbed the world's most peaceful nation, was at the top of the list, followed by Denmark, Norway, New Zealand and Japan.

At the bottom of the list were countries such as Iraq, Sudan, Afghanistan, Israel and Chad.

South American countries such as Colombia (130), Venezuela (123), Ecuador (100) and Brazil (90) were ranked lower than Peru.

On the other hand, Bolivia (78), Paraguay (70) and Argentina (56) received better scores.

The two most peaceful countries in South America were Uruguay, which was ranked 21 and Chile, which earned a spot in 19th place.

The United States of America was in 97th place.

According to Reuters, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack was quoted as saying, "Often times, you have to do difficult things and a lot of times, people don't agree with them. They don't like them."

He added, "A lot of times you fall down in these lists but at the end of the day it is in defense of democracy and the way of life we have enjoyed over the past several decades."

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