A decade-high number of people were killed by homicide in Gwent last year, new figures show.

But across England and Wales, police logged the lowest number of homicide victims since 2016-17, excluding 2020-21, which was affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Office for National Statistics figures show Gwent Police recorded seven people dying because of a homicide incident in the year to March – up from four the year before, and the highest figure since comparable records began a decade ago.

It meant there were 8.5 victims per million residents over the last three years.

Nationally, the number of victims fell by 14% from 684 to 590, with 10.2 homicides logged per million people.

Homicide figures are a total of murder, manslaughter and infanticide incidents, where one incident can have more than one victim.

The figures also show a black person is more than four times more likely to be killed by homicide than a white person, with 39.8 victims per million people, compared with 8.7 victims per million white people.

A Home Office spokesperson said: "Everybody has the right to be safe in their neighbourhoods and communities and we are pleased to see overall homicides down year on year by 14%, but we are not complacent.

"Differences in rates between ethnic groups are likely to reflect a range of factors, including differing age profiles, geographical distributions and socioeconomic differences.

"Our programme of activity and interventions, such as Violence Reduction Units, are targeted in hot-spot areas based on the prevalence of crime and are designed to help address homicide and drug misuse among other crimes."