Morocco has spent $72.1 billion on violence containment and securitization since 2007.
Rabat – Morocco is the fourth safest country in the Middle East and North Africa and the 36th safest globally in terms of terrorism risk, according to the 2020 Global Terrorism Index (GTI).
The Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP) produces the annual GTI using data from the Global Terrorism Database (GTD) and other sources. The GTI scores each country on a scale from 0 to 10; where 0 represents no impact from terrorism and 10 represents the highest measurable impact from terrorism. Countries with the worst scores appear at the top of the index.
Morocco placed 102 out of 138 on the index with a score of 0.565. The ranking puts the country in the 36th position globally and fourth in the MENA region, behind Qatar, the UAE, and Oman.
The North African country suffered nine terrorist attacks between 2007-2019, resulting in 32 fatalities. Morocco was among the MENA countries with the largest improvements in score, along with Bahrain, Lebanon, Algeria, and Kuwait.
Morocco did not record any incidents of terrorism in 2019, nor did Algeria or Kuwait.
The full GTI score takes into account deaths, incidents, injuries, and property damage from terrorism over a five-year period. It defines terrorism as “the threatened or actual use of illegal force and violence by a non‐state actor to attain a political, economic, religious, or social goal through fear, coercion, or intimidation.”
According to the latest GTD, global deaths from terrorism fell for the fifth consecutive year in 2019, having peaked in 2014. The total number of global deaths from terrorism decreased by 15.5% to 13,826.
The impact of terrorism also decreased in 2019, allowing 103 countries to improve their GTI score compared to 35 whose scores worsened.
Morocco an at-risk country
Despite being the 36th safest country from terrorism in the world, the index classified Morocco as an “at-risk country” based on research from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
UNDP identified Morocco as among 18 African countries with significant terrorism trends in its project “Preventing and Responding to Violent Extremism in Africa: A Development Approach.”
The 18 countries are divided into three groups: Epicenter countries, spill-over countries, and at-risk countries.
Epicenter countries include Libya, Somalia, Nigeria, and Mali.
The spill-over countries are Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mauritania, Niger, and Tunisia.
At-risk countries, which exhibit some of the same underlying and root causes of violent extremism as both epicenter and spill-over countries, include Morocco, the Central African Republic, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda, and Sudan.
The majority of African terrorist activity and incidents have occurred in the epicenter countries. The four countries have suffered 62% of the total attacks and 68% of the total fatalities in Africa between 2007 and 2019.
Of the 18 countries, Morocco spent the third-highest amount on violence containment since 2007, with $72.1 billion. Nigeria was first with $137 billion and Sudan second with $81.4 billion.