Of the 17,958 people who died in terrorist attacks in 2013, 82 percent were in one of five countries: Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria, and Syria. That’s one finding from this year’s Global Terrorism Index report, published by the Institute for Economics and Peace. The report is based on data from the University of Maryland’s Global Terrorism Database, which has information on more than 125,000 terrorist attacks between 1970 and 2013.
The report found a 61-percent jump in terrorism fatalities between 2012 and 2013. “Over the same period,” the authors wrote, “the number of countries that experienced more than 50 [terrorism-related] deaths rose from 15 to 24″—an indication that the problem of terrorism was getting both more fatal and more widespread a year before ISIS declared a new caliphate.
But it’s also striking where terrorism didn’t occur. Much of the increase in terrorism-related fatalities in 2013 took place in Iraq, where terrorists claimed nearly 4,000 lives—a 168-percent increase over 2012. Worldwide, Iraq was the worst-affected country, accounting for 34 percent of terrorism-related fatalities in 2013, with Afghanistan ranked next with 17.3 percent. Meanwhile, between 2000 and 2013, the report found, around 5 percent of terrorism-related fatalities occurred in the 34 wealthy countries of the OECD. In 2013 specifically, there were 113 terrorism-related deaths in OECD countries—0.6 percent of the worldwide total. Six of these took place in the United States.