United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged Pakistan to “ensure the safety of aid workers, not least for the sake of the people they are trying to help,” following the murder of aid workers in north-west Pakistan.
Six World Vision International staff members were killed after an attack on the agency’s office in Mansehra district.
“The Secretary-General and I both condemn that unreservedly and call for humanitarian workers in Pakistan, as elsewhere, who are simply there to help the people of Pakistan to be protected and not attacked in this way,” said U.N. Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes.
These attacks are giving rise to questions whether aid agencies will continue with their mission in insecure areas, Kristi Heim noted in a blog for The Seattle Times.
“But more evidence shows why it’s important not to give up,” Heim wrote. “Economic development, and especially empowering women and girls, may be one of the most successful tactics in the fight against terrorism. Sometimes the tribal leaders themselves request, and protect, schools.”