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By Agha Iqrar Haroon, eTN Correspondent, Pakistan | Jun 13, 2012 (eTN) - Tajikistan has been placed among the most peaceful places in Central Asia, according to the 2012 Global Peace Index (GPI). In the entire world, Tajikistan ranked at 99 out of 158 countries, improving 4 ranks compared with 2011 indicators. Considering Tajikistanís position among its close and far neighbors, Afghanistan is standing at position 157 out of 158 countries - one of the most dangerous places to visit in the world. For the second year in a row, Iceland is ranked as the number 1 most peaceful place on Earth. While Pakistan is not far away in standing from India as Pakistan is at 149, India is at position 142 compared to Indian neighbor Nepal at 80 and Bangladesh at 91. Kazakhstan is ranked at 105, while Uzbekistan is standing at the 110 position. Turkmenistan is standing at 117, and Kyrgyzstan is at position 131. Ukraine is ranked at 71, compared to Belarus at 109. Armenia looks far better among its neighbors standing at 115 to Azerbaijan that is at position 132 and Iran at128, while Georgia is at 141. Meanwhile, Russia has dropped over 6 places on the rankings - from 147 in 2011 to 153. The 2012 Global Peace Index claimed that world has become more peaceful for the first time since 2009, while Syria has dropped over 30 places on the rankings. Iceland is once again ranked the most peaceful country in the world, followed by Denmark and New Zealand. Somalia is the least peaceful country at position 158 with a score of 3.392. Afghanistan, Sudan, Iraq, and the Democratic Republic of Congo make up the bottom 5. The Global Peace Index (GPI) is an attempt to measure the relative position of nations' and regions' peacefulness. It is the product of the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) and developed in consultation with an international panel of peace experts from peace institutes and think tanks with data collected and collated by the Economist Intelligence Unit. The list was launched first in May 2007, then continued on in May 2008; June 2, 2009; June 10, 2010; May 25, 2011; and most recently on June 12, 2012. It is claimed to be the first study to rank countries around the world according to their peacefulness. The indicators range from a nation's level of military expenditure to its relations with neighboring countries and the level of respect for human rights. The index has been tested against a range of potential "drivers" or determinants of peace, including levels of democracy and transparency, education, and national wellbeing. Nations considered more peaceful have lower index scores. Source: Eturbonews.com
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