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January 26, 2017 2:58 pm

In New Economist Index, Israel Ranked Among World’s Top 30 Most Democratic Nations

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Israel's parliament, the Knesset. Photo: Itzik Edri via Wikimedia Commons.

Israel’s parliament, the Knesset. Photo: Itzik Edri via Wikimedia Commons.

Israel was ranked 29th out of 167 nations included on The Economist’s newly released 2016 “Democracy Index.”

With an overall score of 7.85, the Jewish state finished near the top of the “flawed democracy” category, which was led by Japan, the United States, Italy, Cape Verde and France.

The index’s “full democracy” category was headlined by Norway, Iceland, Sweden, New Zealand and Denmark.

The five most “authoritarian” nations in the world, according to the index, were North Korea, Syria, Chad, the Central African Republic and Equatorial Guinea.

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Iran was toward the end in the “authoritarian” category, ranking 154th. Palestine — covering the Palestinian Authority-controlled areas of the West Bank and the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip — was ranked 110th, placing it close to the bottom of the “hybrid regime” category.

Israel has slowly moved on the index over the past decade. This year, it received scores of 9.17 for “Electoral process and pluralism,” 7.50 for “Functioning of government,” 8.89 for “Political participation,” 7.50 for “Political culture” and 6.18 for “Civil liberties.”

The latest index marked the first time the US fell into the “flawed democracy” category.

“The downgrade,” The Economist wrote, “was not a consequence of Donald Trump…Rather, it was caused by the same factors that led Mr. Trump to the White House: a continued erosion of trust in government and elected officials.”

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