The World's Most Fragile Countries

South Sudan is on the list of the world's most fragile states.
South Sudan is on the list of the world's most fragile states.

African states dominated the 2017 Fragile States Index published by the Fund for Peace organization. The Index, formally known as the Failed States Index indicates the possibility of a country becoming a failed state due to a weak central government, non-provision of public services, high rate of crime and corruption, refugees, economic decline and political instability. The world’s newest state, South Sudan, remains the world most fragile state followed by Somalia. This article discusses the states that are most likely to be failed states. The index has a maximum score of 120 which signifies a failed state.

5. Sudan - 110.6

Sudan split from South Sudan in 2011 after South Sudan chose to be independent through a referendum. The Sudanese president Omar el-Bashir has a warrant of arrest issued by the International Criminal Court for war crimes. The desert state depended on the south’s oil for its economy and cannot access the oil after the split. A score of 110.6 ranked it as the fifth most fragile state in the world.

4. Yemen - 111.1

Yemen is one of the most troubled countries in the world. In recent times, Yemen has been ravaged by diseases, civil war, and the rise of international terrorism led by Al-Qaida and ISIS. In July 2017, Yemen was battling an outbreak of cholera that was spreading across the state and resulting in the death of several hundreds of people. The displacement of people and international sanctions have condemned the state to a declining economy that cannot support its people.

3. The Central African Republic - 112.6

A fragile state index rating of 112.6 ranks the CAR as the third most fragile country. The recent conflict in the state led to a 0.5 drop in the index compared to 2016. The civil war began in 2012 after the toppling of François Bozizé. Report of genocide and violation of human rights are not new in the country. The mass displacement of people has led to the increase in IDP camps within the border and refugee camps across the border. Instability in the country has condemned the country to a GDP of 1.503 billion USD.

2. Somalia - 113.4

In troubled Somalia, the ouster of Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991 led to the rise of militia led by General Mohamed Farrah Aidid. Since then, the country has been involved in a civil war. The world’s largest refugee camp, Dadaab, in Northeastern Kenya, hosts Somali refugees. Insecurity has led to the destruction of infrastructure particularly in the capital city Mogadishu. Despite having a long coastline, the country's economy is listed among the worst in the world. The government is unable to stand on its own and requires the help of the African Union troops to fight the Al-Shabaab militia and maintain peace. Somalia has been called a "failed state" and has a score of 113.4.

1. South Sudan - 113.9

South Sudan is the world’s newest state. It was formed in 2011 after splitting away from the northern portion of Sudan. After formation, the state experienced a short spell of security before internal wrangles over power and control of the oil-rich country led to violence. As of 2015, the GDP of South Sudan stood at 9.015 billion USD. The inability of the central government to curb insecurity has led to massive migration of people to the neighboring states, and the destruction of infrastructure. In 2017, South Sudan was given the title of the world's most fragile state.

The World's Most Fragile Countries

RankCountryFragile State Ranking
1 South Sudan113.9
2 Somalia113.4
3 Central African Republic112.6
4 Yemen111.1
5 Sudan110.6
6 Syria110.6
7 Democratic Republic of the Congo110
8 Chad109.4
9 Afghanistan107.3
10 Iraq105.4

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