The Institute for Economics and Peace on Wednesday released the Global Peace Index 2012, in which Costa Rica ranked 36th, two positions down from its 2008 ranking.
The index looked at 158 nations and measured the number of armed conflicts, the number of police forces, the prison population, the handling of weapons and terrorist acts in each country. In total, 23 indicators determine the most peaceful country in the world.
Iceland, the least-populated country, tops the list, while Somalia is at the bottom. The United States ranked 88th.
In the region, Panama ranked second at 61st place, followed by Nicaragua at 81st, El Salvador at 111th, Guatemala at 116th and Honduras at 129th.
The Institute for Economics and Peace is an independent, nonprofit research organization based in Washington, D.C. and New York, in the U.S.