LONDON - The number of people killed globally in terrorist attacks jumped by 61 percent in 2013, reflecting the rise of Boko Haram and Islamic State activists, the Institute for Economics and Peace said Tuesday.

In its 2014 Global Terrorism Index launched in London, the Australian based research group reported there were almost 10,000 terrorist attacks in 2013, a 44 percent increase on 2012.

These attacks resulted in 17,958 fatalities, up from 11,133 in 2012, with over 80 percent of the deaths occurring in just five countries: Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria and Syria.

Four Islamist groups operating in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria were responsible for two thirds of the 2013 attacks and the vast majority of the deaths occurred in those countries.

The four most active militant groupings are Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (now renamed Islamic State), Nigeria’s Boko Haram, the Afghan and Pakistani Taliban and transnational al Qaeda-affiliated networks. These four groups were blamed for 66 percent of all fatalities.

Iraq was found to be the country most affected by terrorism, recording a 164 percent rise in fatalities, to 6,362, with IS responsible for most of the deaths.

But the report found that attacks had also increased in the rest of the world, with fatalities rising by half the previous figure, to 3,236 in 2013.

A total of 60 countries recorded deaths from terrorist attacks last year.

“Since we first launched the GTI in 2012, we’ve seen a significant and worrying increase in worldwide incidences of terrorism,” said Steve Killelea, Executive Chairman of IEP.

“Over the last decade the increase in terrorism has been linked to radical Islamic groups whose violent theologies have been broadly taught. To counteract these influences, moderate forms of Sunni theologies need to be championed by Sunni Muslim nations,” he added.

Killelea urged leaders to reduce state-sponsored violence, reduce group grievances and improve community-supported policing to reduce the threat.

The report highlighted Angola, Bangladesh, Burundi, Central African Republic, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Iran, Israel, Mali, Mexico, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Uganda as countries at increased risk from terror attacks.

Despite the global spike, the report stressed that the risk to westerners remained slim. According to its figures, a person in Britain was 188 times more likely to be victim of a murder, and in the US 64 times more likely.

“There is no doubt it is a growing problem. The causes are complex but the four groups responsible for most of the deaths all have their roots in fundamentalist Islam,” said IEP founder Steve Killelea.

“They are particularly angry about the spread of Western education. That makes any attempt at the kind of social mobilising you need to stop them particularly difficult - it can just antagonise them more,” he said.

Deaths in such attacks are now five times higher than in 2000, the report showed, citing analysis of data in the University of Maryland’s Global Terrorism Database.

Most but not all militant attacks were religiously motivated. Attacks in India - the sixth most affected country - rose 70 percent in 2013 largely due to attacks by communist insurgents. The majority remained non-lethal.

Increased targeting of police by the militant groups makes managing the problem even harder, Killelea said, sometimes fuelling rights abuses that compound existing grievances.

The report showed 60 percent of attacks involved explosives, 20 percent firearms and 10 percent other actions such as arson, knives or attacks with motor vehicles. Only five percent of all incidents since 2000 have involved suicide bombings.

The report showed some 80 percent of the militant groups which had ceased their activity since 2000 did so following negotiations. Only 10 percent achieved their goals, while seven percent were eliminated by military action.

Six militants killed in Khyber

At least six militants were killed and scores other sustained injuries when the Pakistani jet planes pounded the suspected hideouts belonging to Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) and Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in Tirah Valley of Khyber Agency, sources said on Tuesday.

The sources said that warplanes targeted the areas of Tor Darra, Dwa Toai of Koki Khel and Nakai of Malikdin Khel and inflicted casualties on the militants in these areas. Three sanctuaries of the militants were also reported demolished in the airstrikes, sources added. All the killed were stated to be volunteers of TTP and LI, however, the account could not be verified independently.

Meanwhile, two bullet-riddled bodies were recovered from Aka Khel area of tehsil Bara on Tuesday. The dead bodies were reportedly brought to Shakas Levy Center for identification, sources said.

The killers shot the unidentified people to dead and dumped their bodies in Aka Khel area of Bara, sources said.

Separately, the armed persons of a banned militant group beheaded an unidentified man on alleged spying charges here in Mehraban Kalley, a far-flung area of Tirah Valley, said sources.