The map above, from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime’s 2013 study of global homicide, shows a huge discrepancy in homicide rate across Europe. Southern and Western Europe have some of the lowest homicide rates in the world, some five times lower than the global average of 6.2 homicides per 100,000 people. However, homicide rates spike in Eastern and certain parts of Northern Europe, often due to higher alcohol consumption. A study by the European Homicide Monitor found that 82 percent of homicide offenders in Finland in 2003-2006 were intoxicated when they committed murder.
Other hotspots for homicide in Europe are mainly due to the presence of urban areas or organized crime. The dark region at the southern tip of Italy, for example, is due to the prevalence of Mafia-related killings.