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Afghan team hailed as inspiration for young women

Afghan team hailed as inspiration for young women

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Jul 20, 2017 - 08:28

WASHINGTON (Pajhwok): The all-girl Afghan robotics team, which participated in an international competition here this week, has become an inspiration for young womeninfo-icon across the globe, a top American senator said on Wednesday.

“This team has become an inspiration for young women … especially for those in developing regions who face barriers to educationinfo-icon and opportunity,” said Senator Jeann Shaheen, only woman on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

When the team was initially denied visas to compete in the FIRST Global Challenge, Shaheen’s office contacted the US Embassy in Kabulinfo-icon on their behalf to urge approval of their applications.

Shaheen hosted the team in her Washington Senate office. She met Lida Azizi, Somayeh Faruqi, Rodaba Noori, Fatemah Qaderyan, Kawsar Roshan, sponsor Roya Mahboob and coach Alireza Mahraban, as well as Lael Mohib, wife of the Afghan ambassador to the US.

Shaheen presented the team with Congressional Record statements honouring their achievements and determination to compete in the FIRST Global Challenge in Washington.

“It was an honor to meet and thank these young women in-person for their perseverance in overcoming the many hurdles they faced in coming to the United States,” she said.

“During our meeting, I expressed how proud I am of them, welcomed them to our country and encouraged them to keep pursing their dreams. These brave young women have shown what hard work, creativity, and resolve can achieve,” Shaheen added.

Several other congressmen praised the team. “Wonderful to meet these amazing girls from Afghanistaninfo-icon despite Trump’s travel ban nearly keeping them out,” said Jim McGovern. “America is stronger when we stand up for diplomacy and education for girls who dream big. Proud to stand with them.”

Congressman Katherine Clark said it was an honor to congratulate the robotics team from Afghanistan on receiving an award for their courageous work. “An inspiration to us all,” she commented.

“Impressive group!” tweeted Congressman Jerry Nadler. “These inspiring girls came from Afghanistan for a robotics competition, but Trump's Muslim ban stopped them until I and others intervened,” said Congresswoman Judy Chu.

Congressman Brad Schneider said he met this group of the enterprising young women from Afghanistan that competed in the event.

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