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Bhutan - Crime & Happiness
Bhutan is the only country in the world to measure the happiness of its citizens.
Authorities measure the "Gross National Happiness" of the population using a sophisticated survey instrument.
It aims to show that quality of life cannot be measured by a country's gross domestic product and therefore Bhutan should move forward prioritising Bhuddist spiritual values rather than simply its economy.
Given this emphasis on people rather than profit it won't surprise you to learn the crime rate in Bhutan is extremely low.
Incidents of petty crime are rarely reported in the country.
Violent crime is very uncommon, and only about 21 incidents of homicide are reported across the whole country yearly.
Some cases of drug abuse are reported and some level of alcohol abuse is a problem. But in general, drug trafficking is low. In fact until TV was introduced in 1999 marijuana plants were considered a weed that was simply fed to pigs.
The most serious threat to Bhutan's security is terrorism carried out by different dissident groups from India illegally camped in the nation.
Most recently, in January 2008, a series of bomb blasts occurred in Thimphu, Samste, Chukha and Dagana injuring one person.
There were other incidents in 2007 and way back in 2004 in what are thiought to be "revenge attacks" against the Bhutanese Government after a crackdown on foreign terrorist camps in the southern regions of the isolated kingdom.
High Living - low crime
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A reminder to anyone undertaking a high altitude trek or ski excursion that AMS - acute mountain sickness - is a threat to your health. There has been a spike in the number of cases reported in the past year.
When it comes to food in Bhutan there is one absolute constant - chilli. The vegetable is added to every dish and most Bhutanese will even eat it fresh. So if you don't like spicy food make sure you make it abundantly clear!
Chilli and Bhutan belly
Bhutan has a range of laws that seem nothing short of bizarre by western standards.
Land of the thunder dragon