Countries with the highest and lowest murder rate in the world
Some of the drivers of homicide are organized crime, gender stereotypes, inequality, unemployment, political instability, firearms, and drugs.
Murder has become the most common type of violent crime over the last decade in some parts of the world. The rate of murders and the type of murder conducted (self-inflicted, homicidal, or accidental) varies significantly from country to country.
According to the United Nations Global Study on Homicide 2019, several factors contribute to lower murder rates and overall crime rates, including the wealth of a nation, effective law enforcement, strict weapons regulations, the severity of punishments for committing murder, and more.
Some of the drivers of homicide are organized crime, gender stereotypes, inequality, unemployment, political instability, firearms, and drugs. Experts state that if a country’s government can identify these drivers and contributors, it can adopt policies to reduce the homicide rates.
UN’s Global Study on Homicide Report, Murder Rate
According to the report, more than 464,000 people died from violent crimes like murder, while fewer died from armed combat and terrorism combined in 2017. The report further states:
Countries with high firearm rates tend to have higher intentional homicide rates. Since the start of the twenty-first century, organized crime has resulted in roughly the same number of killings as all armed conflicts across the world combined. It is estimated that an average of roughly 65,000 killings/year were related to organized crime and gangs over the period 2000–2017. Up to 19 percent of all homicides recorded globally in 2017 were related to organized crime and gangs.
Countries with the Highest Murder Rate
Here is the list of 10 countries with the highest homicide rates:
- El Salvador (82.84 per 100k people)
- Honduras (56.52 per 100k people)
- Venezuela (56.33 per 100k people)
- United States Virgin Islands (49.26 per 100k people)
- Jamaica (47.01 per 100k people)
- Lesotho (41.25 per 100k people)
- Belize (37.60 per 100k people)
- Saint Vincent And The Grenadines (36.46 per 100k people)
- Saint Kitts And Nevis (34.23 per 100k people)
- South Africa (33.97 per 100k people)
According to the report, the prevalence of gangs, corrupt authorities, poor gun control, and a flawed justice system led to high murder rates in these countries.
Countries with the Lowest Murder Rate
Here is the list of 10 countries with the lowest homicide rates:
- Japan (0.2)
- Singapore (0.2)
- China, Hong Kong (0.3)
- Luxembourg (0.3)
- Indonesia (0.4)
- Norway (0.5)
- Oman (0.5)
- Switzerland (0.5)
- United Arab Emirates (0.5)
- China (0.6)
The report states that stringent weapon regulations, a very lengthy firearm-acquiring application process, and official punishment of death-by-hanging for homicide crimes have contributed to the low murder rates in these countries.
Here is the graphical representation of the homicide rate in countries data:
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