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ISLAMABAD:

The state of democracy in Pakistan has deteriorated to a level where it sits just above countries described as authoritarian.

This was claimed in the Economist Intelligence Units (EIU) Democracy Index 2022 released on Thursday.

According to the Index, Pakistan had a cumulative score of 4.13 for 2022. As result, it fell three places in the 167 country-ranking to occupy 107th place.

It found itself in the company of countries such as Cote d’Ivoire (106th place) and Mauritania (108th place), all of whom were listed as “hybrid regimes”, as reported.

For the five categories, it scored 5.67 for electoral process and pluralism, 5 for functioning of government, 2.78 for political participation, 2.5 for political culture and 4.71 for civil liberties.

The EIU said that it had began the Democracy Index in 2006, to provide a snapshot of the state of democracy worldwide in 165 independent states and two territories, covering the vast majority of the world’s population and states (microstates are excluded).

Based on its scores on a range of indicators within these categories, each country is then classified as one of four types of regime: “full democracy”, “flawed democracy”, “hybrid regime” or “authoritarian regime”.

The report noted that only 24 reviewed countries, or around 14.4 per cent of all countries comprising just 8 per cent of the world’s population lived in countries that can be identified as “full democracies”.

Hybrid regimes — not democracies but not authoritarian states either — accounted for 36 countries, including Pakistan, it was reported.

They made up around 21.6 per cent of countries and represented 17.9 per cent of the global population.

Hybrid regimes are where elections have substantial irregularities that often prevent them from being both free and fair.

Government pressure on opposition parties and candidates may be common. Serious weaknesses are more prevalent than in flawed democracies in political culture, functioning of government and political participation.

Around 36 countries were classified as “hybrid regimes” in 2022, up from 34 the previous year, citing the EIU Index. IANS