Israel has been placed a dismal 141st out of 144 on a list of the world’s most peaceful countries, beating just Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia.
Countries which ranked higher in the 2009 Global Peace Index included Sudan, Zimbabwe, Lebanon, North Korea, and Iran.
The index was compiled by the think-tank Vision of Humanity, with the data compiled and analysed by the Economic Intelligence Unit.
The survey is endorsed by ex-United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Anan, the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and former US President Jimmy Carter.
Each country is given a score based on 23 different indices which measure the “peacefulness” of the country.
Israel scored poorly for a high level of “organised conflict”, and poor relationships with its neighbours. It was also given a very low score for the perceived level of “respect for human rights.” Israelis were also given low marks for their “perception of distrust in others”.
But the country scored better marks for political stability and low criminal violence, and even higher marks for charitable donations to the UN and hospitality to foreigners.
Israel has always fared poorly in this particular index: it ranked fifth from last in 2008, and just third from last in 2007.