PORT OF SPAIN – Trinidad and Tobago has received its lowest ranking ever on an international peace list as the country continues to have maximum scores for homicides and violent crimes, and high scores for perceptions of criminality and access to weapons.
The Report put the “national cost of the violence” at US$ 3,852,415,069.
This country ranked 97 out of 163 countries (one being most peaceful and 163 least peaceful) in the 2017 Global Peace Index (GPI), which attempts to measure peace, its causes and economic value of nations and regions.
The country was ranked 84th in 2016.
The report is produced by global non-profit, non-partisan think tank – the Institute for Economics and Peace, and scored Trinidad and Tobago on – perceptions of criminality, security officers and police, homicide, incarceration, access to weapons, intensity of internal conflict, violent demonstrations, violent crime, political instability, political terror, weapons imports, terrorism impact, deaths from internal conflict, internal conflicts fought, and military expenditure, among other factors.
Details of the Report came up in the Senate on Thursday with Opposition member Wade Mark asking what measures were being taken by Government to correct this negative image.
National Security Minister Edmund Dillon answered for Foreign Affairs Minister Dennis Moses, saying “a quick look over the last ten years showed the score fluctuating between 87 to 94” and that the rank could be linked to the rise in the country’s military expenditure.
Opposition Senator Daniel Solomon noted that poorer countries in the Caribbean did not rank as low as Trinidad and Tobago, saying that Haiti was ranked 81, Guyana ranked 83. Jamaica is ranked 92. In the 2012 report there was a drop of 14 places to 94 and then an improvement the following year to 88. For the next two reports the country declined, dropping to 93 in 2014 and 97 this year.