Rome (AsiaNews) - The number of deaths caused by the wars in the world grew by 60% in the last two years. The victims, totaled 180 thousand in 2014, while in 2012 there were 110 thousand. Although the number of conflicts has declined, the fighting is more violent, and often takes place in urban areas.
This is what emerges from the data published by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), who stress that Syria alone in the last year has seen 70 thousand people die (200 thousand since the beginning of the conflict in 2011).
Episodes of conflict have decreased from 63 in 2008 to 42 last year. This is due to the fact that some countries at risk of civil war such as Colombia and the Philippines seem on track to reaching peaceful resolutions.
The IISS study says that the increase of the victims is caused by the "inexorable growth in the intensity of violence", led by the jihadist wars in the Arab world, including attacks of the Islamic State in settlements as Mosul and Tikrit.
According to Nigel Inkster, Director of Studies in international threats and political risk at IISS, the most serious problem is that "conflicts occur more often in cities, and by definition therefore encourage a greater number of civilian casualties."
According to the IISS, the Syrian conflict has caused 3.4 million refugees, 1.4 of which in the last year alone. The UN figures report that in 2013 there were more than 50 million displaced persons in the world. It is the first time that figure has been reached since the Second World War.
After Syria, the country where most people were killed in 2014 was Iraq (18 thousand), the third Mexico with clashes between rival gangs (15 thousand). In Afghanistan there were 7,500 victims; Ukraine 4.5000. Despite these numbers, Inker says that "the portrait of 2014 is inconsistent, because there are promising signs of hope for improvement, even if the levels of violence remain high."