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World's deadliest cities named, with 21 of the top 50 in Brazil

The Week logoThe Week 30-01-2016
World's deadliest cities named, with 21 of the top 50 in Brazil © Raul Arboleda/AFP/Getty Imags World's deadliest cities named, with 21 of the top 50 in Brazil

Nearly half of the world's 50 deadliest cities are in Brazil, according to a new league table of global murder rates.

The top 50 includes 21 cities in Brazil, as well as four in the United States.

It does not include cities in war zones, which explains why Baghdad, Mogadishu, Raqqa and other hotspots do not appear.

The survey is based on the number of murders per 100,000 residents during 2015 in cities with populations of 300,000 or more.

While Brazil is not represented in the top ten, it does dominate the top 50, news that represents "a blow to the nation's image as it prepares to host this year's Olympic Games", says the Daily Telegraph.

Topping the list is Caracas, in Venezuela. With a population of 3.3 million people and 3,946 homicides, it suffered the equivalent of 120 murders per 100,000 residents.

Caracas overtook San Pedro Sula, in Honduras, the "winner" for the past four years, which saw its murder rate decline significantly in 2015.

There were four Venezuelan cities in the top 11, a figure the Mexico-based Council for Public Security and Justice, which compiles the annual table, blamed on the country's increasingly turbulent political and economic situation.

Practically all of the 50 deadliest cities were in the Americas, with only South Africa's four biggest cities breaking up the pattern. Cape Town was ranked number nine.

The US cities to make the table are (in order): St Louis, Baltimore, Detroit and New Orleans. St Louis, which is in Missouri, suffered 59.23 murders per 100,000 people in 2015 and was ranked 15th deadliest city in the world.

Baltimore - where, the Telegraph recalls, there were riots last year after a black man, Freddie Gray, died in police custody - was the world's 19th most violent city.

The top 20 is:

1. Caracas, Venezuela

2. San Pedro Sula, Honduras

3. San Salvador, El Salvador

4. Acapulco, Mexico

5. Maturin, Venezuela

6. Distrito Central, Honduras

7. Valencia, Venezuela

8. Palmira, Colombia

9. Cape Town, South Africa

10. Cali, Colombia

11. Ciudad Guayana, Venezuela

12. Fortaleza, Brazil

13. Natal, Brazil

14. Salvador, Brazil

15. St Louis, USA

16. Joao Pessoa, Brazil

17. Culiacan, Mexico

18. Maceio, Brazil

19. Baltimore, USA

20. Barquisimeto, Venezuela

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