Friday, June 22, 2007

Failed State Index of the Countries in the Region

Nepal ranked 21st in Failed States Index

Nepal is ranked in the 21st position in the list of 60 most vulnerable states in the third annual Failed States Index 2007.

The index compiled by the Fund for Peace, an independent research organisation, and FOREIGN POLICY magazine, is topped by Sudan followed by Iraq and Somalia.

"Using 12 social, economic, political, and military indicators, we ranked 177 states in order of their vulnerability to violent internal conflict and societal deterioration. The index scores are based on data from more than 12,000 publicly available sources collected from May to December 2006. The 60 most vulnerable states are listed in the rankings," states the news in the website of the FOREIGN POLICY, which is owned by Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Among the South Asian countries, Afghanistan is ranked at 8th position while Pakistan stands at 11th position. Bangladesh is at 16th position; Sri Lanka stands at 25th position and Bhutan at 47th position. Only India and the Maldives are off the list from this region.

"The threats of weak states ripple far beyond their borders and endanger the development and security of nations that are their political and economic opposites," writes the news.

The news adds that world leaders and the heads of multilateral institutions routinely take to lecterns to reiterate their commitment to pulling vulnerable states back from the brink, but it can be difficult to translate damage control into viable, long-term solutions that correct state weaknesses. "Aid is often misspent. Reforms are too many or too few. Security needs overwhelm international peacekeepers, or chaos reigns in their absence."

The problems that plague failing states are generally all too similar: rampant corruption, predatory elites who have long monopolisd power, an absence of the rule of law, and severe ethnic or religious divisions.

For the second year in a row, Sudan has topped the rankings as the state most at risk of failure. The primary cause of its instability, violence in the country's western region of Darfur, is as well known as it is tragic. "At least 200,000 people—and perhaps as many as 400,000—have been killed in the past four years by janjaweed militias armed by the government, and 2 to 3 million people have fled their torched villages for squalid camps as the violence has spilled into the Central African Republic and Chad."

"Iraq and Afghanistan , the two main fronts in the global war on terror, both suffered over the past year. Their experiences show that billions of dollars in development and security aid may be futile unless accompanied by a functioning government, trustworthy leaders, and realistic plans to keep the peace and develop the economy. Just as there are many paths to success, there are many paths to failure for states on the edge." sd Jun 20 07

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