Four peace success stories from 2015

Whilst global peace levels remained stable last year, four countries saw important increases in their peace levels.  


GPI Score: 2.235
Country rank: 120 out of 162

Guinea-Bissau had the most significant increase in peace in the 2015 Global Peace Index, stemming largely from improvements in its domestic situation. The holding of credible and predominantly peaceful elections in 2014 reduced tensions and improved security; that the army accepted the result was also a sign of greater stability. Moreover, the elected administration includes the country’s two largest parties, who are historical rivals, reducing the risk that election losers will disrupt the peace process. The election and consequent return to some form of constitutional order translated into improvements in the intensity of internal conflict, political instability, violent demonstrations and violent crime. The presence of a democratically elected government with robust support from donors continues to ease some popular frustration. The authorities also embarked on a gradual army reform process, aimed at reinforcing civilian control over the military, thus reducing the risk of army interference in political matters, and furthering the cause of political stability


GPI Score: 2.133
Country rank: 105 out of 162 

Cote d’Ivoire had the second biggest improvement in its score (-0.214). Similar to Guinea-Bissau this improvement was due to an improvement in its domestic situation. The number of attacks by former rebels fell over the previous year, and was limited to pockets of insecurity along the border with Liberia and some areas in the north of the country. The authorities’ efforts to demobilise ex-rebels and ex-militia members supported an improvement in the intensity of internal conflict. Challenges remain, however, such as integrating former rebels into civilian life or the regular armed forces and quelling the sporadic attacks against civilian and military targets in the more precarious regions mentioned above.


GPI Score: 2.382
Country rank: 137 out of 162

While Egypt had one of the largest declines in its score in 2014, it had an improvement of -0.192 in the 2015 Global Peace Index. Egypt improved overall due to its large improvement in its domestic situation. Following the election of former defence minister Abdel Fattah el-Sisi as president in May 2014, levels of crime dropped, reflecting the effectiveness of the security apparatus. This resulted in an improvement in the perceptions of criminality indicator, as security forces’ visible presence on the streets was enhanced compared to the period under the deposed Muslim Brotherhood regime of Morsi. Relatedly, the intensity of internal conflict and political instability has also now improved due to the removal of the Muslim Brotherhood from power, and an overall improvement in the security picture, which had deteriorated since the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak.


GPI Score: 2.152
Country rank 108 out of 162

Politically, the most important factor behind the improvement in Tajikistan’s score was a modest thaw in relations with neighbouring Uzbekistan, which in the past has subjected Tajikistan to considerable economic and political pressure owing to differences over issues of border demarcation, energy and water. Common concerns over security—linked mostly to Russia’s military actions against Ukraine from late February 2014 on the pretext of protecting Russian speakers, but also to the approach of the drawdown of US troops from neighbouring Afghanistan—seem to have been behind a modest rapprochement between Imomali Rahmon and Islam Karimov, the presidents of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, respectively made public in the wake of a meeting of the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation (SCO) summit in Tajikistan’s capital, Dushanbe, in September 2014.


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