Global Study on Homicide

A new report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) entitled the Global Study on Homicide, outlines that the total number of annual deaths as a result of homicide globally in 2010 as estimated at 468,000 people. More than a third of these statistics – 36 per cent – are said to have occurred in Africa, followed by 31 per cent in the Americas, 27 per cent in Asia, 5 per cent in Europe and 1 per cent in Oceania.  These figures, when linked according to the population size of each region, reveals that the homicide rate in Africa and the Americas is more than double the global average. It also reveals that that Central America and the Caribbean have homicide rates that are ‘near crisis point.’

The link between homicide and development:

The report states that while there are various reasons and driving forces as to why people kill each other, homicide levels and trends indicate that there is a link between homicide and development: “higher levels of homicide are associated with low human and economic development… The largest shares of homicides occur in countries with low levels of human development, and countries with high levels of income inequality are afflicted by homicide rates almost four times higher than more equal societies.”

Gender and homicide

The report states that “Globally, some 80% of homicide victims and perpetrators are men,” who are more likely to be killed in ‘public places’ whereas women “are mainly murdered at home…In Europe, women comprised almost 80% of all people killed by a current or former partner in 2008.” Violence and homicide against women trends are consistent throughout the world, citing examples of Italy where intimate partner/female family-related homicides account for more homicides than the victims of mafia groups, and in Asia the continued prevalence of dowry-related deaths that cost many thousands of women’s lives each year.

See the full UNODC report: