Damascus, Kiev and Tripoli top the list of the 10 cities rapidly becoming the worst to live in the world

The cities have shown the biggest fall in liveability scores over the past five years

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The Independent Online

Damascus, Kiev and Tripoli have topped the list of the 10 cities across the world rapidly becoming the worst to live in, according to The Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual Global Liveability Ranking.

Damascus in Syria is currently the worst city to live in, coming last in the overall ranking of 140 cities. The city’s rating has dropped by 27 points over the past five years to an overall rating of 29.3.

The ranking assesses which locations around the world provide the best or worst living conditions. Conflict and economic weakness have been contributing factors to the cities which have seen the biggest fall in liveability scores over the past five years.

Kiev in Ukraine has seen the sharpest fall in liveability over the past 12 months due to the ongoing conflict, earning it the city with the second biggest fall in liveability score, despite it placing at 132 overall.

Russia’s involvement in the Ukraine conflict and the sanctions imposed on the country by the international community has also negatively impacted the liveability of Moscow and St Petersburg, placing them at number seven and 10 respectively on the list of cities to experience the biggest falls in liveability.

Athens, ranking at number 72 overall, has become the only city in Western Europe to fall outside the top tier of liveability, as the impact of austerity and economic weakness has seen it experience the fifth biggest fall on the index over the past five years.

Jon Copestake, editor of the survey, said: “The threat to personal safety, whether in the form of crime, unrest or conflict, has knock-on implications for other aspects of liveability. Last year, the conflict in Ukraine, the terror attack in Paris and austerity in Athens formed a sobering backdrop to regional liveability.”

At the top however, Melbourne has retained the title of the most liveable city in the world for the fifth year running, closely followed by Vienna, Austria, and Vancouver, Canada.