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Ireland named in top 10 safest countries to visit for first time ever

By Sean McCarthaigh

Ireland has been named as one of the 10 safest countries in the world to visit for the first time ever.

The latest annual Global Peace Index has ranked the Republic as the eighth safest destination for tourists out of 163 countries around the world.

Ireland had been ranked 11th in 2020 – a position just outside the top 10 which it had held consistently since 2016.

Read More: Minister says no concerns flagged over hotel capacity for tourists visiting Ireland in summer

The Republic’s lowest ever ranking was in 2011 when it was named in 16th place.

The annual guide, which is promoted by Condé Nest, said Ireland had jumped three places to enter the Top 10 “despite some violent anti-lockdown demonstrations.”

However, it acknowledged Ireland’s “relatively low crime rates” as well as its “good economy and happy and friendly residents.”

It said these qualities “more than made up for any pandemic blips.”

Ireland was the only new country to feature in the latest Top 10 with Singapore dropping out from last year’s list.

The ranking is based on the Global Peace Index developed by the Institute of Economics and Peace which has been published annually since 2009.

The index is based on a range of data that examines the level of societal safety and security, the extent of ongoing domestic and international conflict and the degree of militarisation in countries.

It takes into accounts such data as incarceration rates, homicide levels and perception of criminality.

Ireland was only ranked 18th for domestic safety and security in the latest list but in joint 1st place for lack of domestic and international conflict.

The report said the latest index revealed a world in which the conflicts and crises which emerged in the past decade had begun to abate “only to be replaced with a new wave of tension and uncertainty as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and rising tensions between many of the major powers.”

Overall, the index said the average level of peace across the globe deteriorated by 0.07% compared to the previous year.

It noted it was the ninth deterioration in peace levels around the world in the past 13 years, although the situation had improved in 86 countries but worsened in 73.

Condé Nest said the latest increase was “unsurprising given how Covid visibly shook up the lives of nearly everyone in the world.”

It claimed the amount of Covid-related violent incidents around the globe including riots and targeted physical assaults was “off the charts”.

It noted there were at least 158 countries where at least one violent incident linked to the pandemic had been recorded.

Conde Nest said the annual list still looked fairly similar to previous years with Iceland retaining its reputation as the safest country for travellers for the 13th consecutive year.

The top 10 countries were:

1. Iceland

2. New Zealand

3. Denmark

4. Portugal

5. Slovenia

6. Austria

7. Switzerland

8. Ireland

9. Czech Republic

10. Canada

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Dive Deeper:
Media polarisation risks press freedom and peace in conflict-hit Mali and Ethiopia
When media rights are curtailed, fake news and posts on social platforms drive tension and violence, as the latest World…
34 countries with no travel restrictions as Spain could lift rules within days
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Global tourism recovering, but not back to pre-pandemic levels
PARIS: Global tourism is roaring back to life despite Covid travel headaches and the effects of the war in Ukraine,…
Tourism recovering, but not back to pre-pandemic levels
Paris (AFP) - Global tourism is roaring back to life despite Covid travel headaches and the effects of the war…
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Truss in new warning to Brussels over Northern Ireland Protocol
The Foreign Secretary said the UK will have ‘no choice but to act’ unless the EU shows greater flexibility.
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Get all your news in one place