V-Dem study finds majority in Middle East and North Africa living under authoritarian rule

GOTHENBURG, Sweden — The latest report by V-Dem Institute, associated with Sweden’s Gothenburg University, highlighted the prevalence of authoritarian regimes across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, alongside a global decline in democracy, particularly in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

The comprehensive study evaluates democracy worldwide based on key principles such as electoral processes, liberalism, governance, and legal equality.

According to the report, while the world is almost evenly split between democratic and authoritarian countries, a staggering 71% of the global population resides in nations governed by authoritarian regimes.

The report distinguishes between various governance systems, with liberal democracy representing the highest level of democracy. It emphasizes the importance of legislative and judicial oversight over executive authority, alongside safeguarding civil liberties and legal equality.

Highlighting the MENA region’s trajectory, the report notes a gradual decline in democracy since the Arab Spring, positioning it as the most authoritarian region globally. Shockingly, it reveals that 98% of the region’s population is subject to authoritarian rule.