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A new global survey has placed Canada among the top 10 most peaceful countries in the world.

The Global Peace Index (GPI) compares 163 independent states and territories (99.7 per cent of the world’s population) according to their levels of peacefulness.

Up two positions from its 2017 ranking, Canada is ranked in an envious position at 6th overall. The worst it has ever been was 14th in 2010 and the best was fourth in 2012.

The top five countries on the 2018 list are Iceland, followed by New Zealand, Austria, Portugal, and Denmark. The least peaceful are Syria, Afghanistan, South Sudan, Iraq, and Somalia.

The GPI is a report produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace and developed in consultation with an international panel of peace experts from peace institutes and think tanks with data collected and collated by the Economist Intelligence Unit.

The Index was first launched in 2007, with subsequent reports released annually.

The study was conceived by Australian technology entrepreneur Steve Killelea, and is endorsed by individuals such as former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and former United States president Jimmy Carter.

The GPI used indicators such as internal and external conflicts, relations with neighbouring countries, and political instability.

It also looked at the number of jailed persons, homicides and violent crime, the impact of terrorism, and the ease of access to small arms and light weapons.