This beautiful world of ours is an amazing creation. But different corners of the world have their dangers and quirks, so tourists have to be aware of the risks a holiday destination can pose. From pocket pickers to murderers, and from wars to natural disasters, these are the elements of destruction that can cause lawlessness in any place in the world. Although no country can be termed as completely devoid of these elements, there are few places in the world where lawlessness goes unchecked to an extreme, on every street corner. It is great to be aware of the wonderful places this world has to offer, but it is extremely important to know which places to avoid as a tourist, at least temporarily. Underneath are enlisted a few most dangerous countries in the world.
1. Somalia- Famine and pirates
Somalia is an extremely poor country with a long history of anarchy, famine, corruption and lack of government. Somaliland pirates are famous for their armed water patrols that seize ships and hold the crew for ransom. Further north, the country has witnessed a brutal bloodshed over many years due to the rivalry between criminal factions. The capital is also not safe, as it hosts rival factions of clans and warlords. Ethnic cleaning is another factor which has laid the grounds for further anarchic situations. Poverty, lawlessness and wretched lifestyle have contributed to the worst chaotic situation in this African country.
2. Sudan- Civil war
Civil war, lawlessness, genocide and the abject living conditions of the people have contributed to the devastating situations in Sudan. Even after the split of Sudan from its Southern areas, the situation has not improved. On the contrary, the tensions between the two borders have risen to uncontrollable levels. The country stays on top for its risk of terrorism, violent crimes and genocide. Religious extremism and civil war have killed millions over the last fifty years.
3. Colombia- Kidnappings
Colombia poses two great threats to its inhabitants and travelers: kidnappings and drug trade. The rural areas pose great danger of kidnappings by drug dealers and terrorist factors. The country produces almost 75% of the world’s cocaine and the war between drug dealers and the government has laid out extremely bloody results; still, the drug dealing faction sustains. Firearms are easily accessible in the country that ranks fourth in world for its murder rates.
4. Brazil- Gang violence
Although Brazil is heading towards economic reforms at top speed and is one of the BRIC nations predicted to conquer the economic world in next few decades, a large number of Brazilians live in abject poverty due to the extreme divide between the rich and the poor. Pertaining to low living standard and hardships, this country has one of the world’s highest murder rates. Firearms are common with gangs, robbers and kidnappers, while street crime is very common even in famous cities like Rio de Janeiro.
5. South Africa- Sexual assault
South Africa stands on the second position in the world for its highest rate of homicides. Almost 50 people are killed every day in this chaotic land, making it the third country with the highest death rate. South Africa is also called the rape capital of the world with about 118.3 rapes for every 100,000 people. This country has about 10 million HIV affected people which aggravates the sexual problems prevalent in the society. Farmers and rural areas of the most affected of these crimes, but violent communities are fast spreading to all corners of the country. It’s a beautiful place for tourists yet one has to be very careful while travelling in this part of the world.
6. Burundi- War and disease
Burundi has to deal with a large number of threats including violence caused by political factions and youth groups which are equipped with high number of weapons. Other staggering issues for its citizens are the high death rate due to HIV which takes away almost 15,000 lives every year, 10 lives for 100 Burundi citizens. Tourists should be extremely careful with food, and be sure to procure it from safe distributors.
7. Afghanistan- War and landmines
Afghanistan is a country that has been at war for the past decade. Apart from that, the biggest danger for its people is from the landmines planted during the Soviet War; they cripple almost 100 people every year.
This country has the second highest death rate in the world and also second highest infant mortality rate. Suicide bombs, religious extremism, landmines, assassinations and drug dealings are very common in this hard hit country. Political unrest, Taliban insurgency and the presence of Al-Qaeda’s top leaders in the barren mountains of Afghanistan make it a hub for terrorist activities.
8. Iraq- War aftermath and militant groups
Iraq has gone through worse days of hostility during the Saddam regime and war, yet its wretched days are not over yet. There are a large number of terrorist organizations widely working in this country to add fuel to the unrest. These organizations plant bombs in market places killing hundreds in only months. The militant groups are also known for their hostage activities and murders. The situation was bad during the presence of military troops for peacekeeping, but after their withdrawal the unrest has worsened to an extremely high rate. It is the most dangerous country to travel for foreigners, as militant groups and Iraqi citizens are quite hostile towards their presence. Iraq has one of the highest death rates in the world.
Two of the most common reasons for lawlessness and anarchy in these countries are war and poverty. Most of these countries have gone through civil unrest and major wars for many years which have completely destroyed the fabric of governance. Abject economical conditions are the adverse side of the war, which breaks the moral and ethical development of the people, leading to widespread chaos and murders. Although most of the mentioned countries are great places to travel, they pose great threat to tourists and travelers. Many of these countries do not allow Western citizens to travel on their soil.
An important note one the information above: travelling in organized groups, led by trained guides would surely be quite interesting, but it is important that tourists consider the risks as well.