One person in four worldwide paid a bribe during the past year, according to a study released Thursday to mark International Anti-Corruption Day.The study itself says that 51% of Palestinian Arabs paid a bribe to get services in the past year. They didn't list every Middle Eastern country, so it is unclear how the PA and Hamas compare with Jordan or Egypt, but Lebanon's score was 34%.
The study, by the Berlin-based non-governmental agency Transparency International, focuses on small-scale bribery and was put together from polls conducted among more than 91,000 people in 86 countries and territories.
In the past 12 months, one in four paid a bribe to one of nine institutions, such as health, education or tax authorities, according to the 2010 Global Corruption Barometer.
Countries topping the list for reported bribe payments over the year were Afghanistan, Cambodia, Cameroon, India, Iraq, Liberia, Nigeria, the Palestinian territories, Senegal, Sierre Leone and Uganda, where more than one person out of two said they had handed out financial sweeteners to officials.
Israel's score was 4%, slightly lower than the US score of 5% and tied with Canada.
Denmark's score was zero, the only country to hit that level (the UK and Norway were next at 1%.)