Pakistan: Raid on Save the Children Non-Governmental Organization

Press Statement
John Kirby
Department Spokesperson
Washington, DC
June 12, 2015


We are concerned about Pakistan's crackdown on international charitable organizations and other NGOs. Save the Children is one of many such organizations that has long operated with transparency and in close coordination with the Government of Pakistan. Save the Children has worked in Pakistan for more than 35 years, carrying out programs in health, education, and food security that reach more than four million children and their families.

We share the Government of Pakistan's goal of promoting a secure, economically vibrant, democratic Pakistan. Much of our support for that goal involves channeling financial support through international non-governmental organizations (INGOs), who work as our implementing partners in a variety of sectors. Recently, several of these partners have reported difficulty doing business in Pakistan. This has had a significant negative impact on international partner efforts to support Government of Pakistan priorities.

Pakistan's international development partners respect the Government of Pakistan's need for full transparency from INGOs involving their activities within the country. We also agree INGOs must operate within a relevant legal and regulatory framework. For that reason, we urge the Government of Pakistan to standardize and streamline a transparent process that will allow INGOs, including Save the Children, to work legally in Pakistan. INGOs are an important part of the international development community's effort to support the Government of Pakistan in facilitating effective and meaningful development, governance, and humanitarian assistance to benefit the people of Pakistan.