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Homeland Security

Report: Terror Attacks, Deaths Rise Sharply in 2013

by Mia Bush November 18, 2014

The number of people killed in terrorist attacks jumped more than 60 percent from 2012 to 2013, due largely to unrest in the Middle East and Nigeria, a new report found.

​​Deaths due to terrorism rose from 11,133 in 2012 to 17,958 in 2013, according to the Global Terrorism Index produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace, a think tank based in Australia.

More than 80 percent of those deaths occurred in just five countries: Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria and Syria.

In the same period, terrorist attacks rose more than 40 percent, from 6,825 incidents in 2012 to 9,814 in 2013.

'Since we first launched the GTI in 2012, we've seen a significant and worrying increase in worldwide incidences of terrorism,' said IEP founder Steve Killelea in a news release.

'Over the last decade the increase in terrorism has been linked to radical Islamic groups whose violent theologies have been broadly taught. To counteract these influences, moderate forms of Sunni theologies need to be championed by Sunni Muslim nations,' he said.

Terrorism is a growing problem, Killelea said, adding that the four groups responsible for most terrorism-related deaths have roots in fundamentalist Islam.

Among the report findings:

- Religious ideology is the predominant motivation for terrorism in Sub-Saharan and North Africa, the Middle East and South Asia. In the rest of the world, terrorism is more likely to be driven by political or nationalistic and separatist movements.
- Four groups - the Islamic State group, formerly known as ISIS or ISIL, Boko Haram, al-Qaida and the Taliban - were blamed for 66 percent of all fatalities.
- Explosives were used in 60 percent of terrorist attacks, while suicide bombings accounted for less than 5 percent of the attacks.
- Iraq is No. 1 among the top 10 countries that had the highest levels of terrorist activity in 2013. The rest, in order, are: Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria, Syria, India, Somalia, Yemen, Philippines and Thailand.

The Global Terrorism Index ranks countries by the impact of terrorist activities as well as analyzing the economic and social dimensions associated with terrorism.

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