Conflict Trends: A Global Overview, 1946–2023

PRIO Paper

Rustad, Siri Aas (2024) Conflict Trends: A Global Overview, 1946–2023. PRIO Paper. Oslo: PRIO.

This PRIO Paper examines global conflict trends between 1946 and 2023 using data from the Uppsala Conflict Data Program (UCDP). In 2023, 59 state-based conflicts were recorded in 34 countries, the highest number of conflicts registered since 1946. The wars in Ukraine and Gaza were the primary contributors to the more than 122,000 battle-related deaths in 2023, despite a substantial decrease from the previous year, 2023 is third most violent year since the end of the Cold War. Non-state conflicts decreased compared to previous years. In 2023, 75 non-state conflicts were recorded resulting in approximately 21,000 battle-related deaths.

The Americas is the region with the highest number of non-state conflicts, and Mexico remains one of the most violent countries in terms of non-state conflicts, with almost 14,000 battle-related deaths. One-sided violence against civilians was recorded in 35 countries in 2023. Non-state actors remain the drivers behind fatalities resulting from one-sided violence, however, thirteen governments were responsible for one-sided violence against civilians in 2023. While battle related deaths decreased in 2023, we see an increase by non-state actors in several countries, thus making the conflict landscape more complex and difficult to navigate.

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