InterAction says harassment of nonprofit groups must stop in Egypt

News and Press Release
Originally published

Contacts: Sue Pleming: 202.552.6561 or 202.341.3814 (Cell) or spleming@interaction.orgTawana Jacobs: 202.552.6534 or 202.297.1696 (Cell) or

WASHINGTON (Dec. 30, 2011)—The crackdown in Egypt this week on civil society organizations, including several U.S. groups, is deeply troubling and must stop immediately, said InterAction, the largest alliance of U.S.-based international NGOs.

"The harassment of nonprofit groups is unacceptable and counterproductive. A strong civil society which is able to operate freely and without fear of interference is essential, particularly at this time in Egypt's history," said Samuel A. Worthington, president and CEO of InterAction.

Earlier this week, Egyptian security forces raided the offices of several nonprofit organizations. The offices of the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute were among NGOs affected by the crackdown.

"We appeal to the Egyptian authorities to cease from these senseless raids of groups who are working hard to help build a stronger, more inclusive nation," said Worthington.

The U.S. State Department has said it is "deeply concerned" by the raids and urged the Egyptian government, to end the harassment of NGO staff, return all property and resolve the issue immediately.