Secretary Clinton Meets With Afghan Women Leaders

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
July 8, 2009
Secretary Clinton Meets With Senior Executive Afghan Women Civil Servants

Yesterday, Secretary Clinton met with Afghan women leaders.

On July 7, 2009, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with senior executive Afghan women civil servants on a program sponsored by USAID and the U.S.-Afghan Women's Council at the State Department. In the photo above, pictured from left to right are: Ambassador Melanne Verveer, State Department; Nahid Wardag, Ministry of Finance; Qudsia Kakar, Ministry of Public Works; Rahela Sidiqi, Civil Service Commission; Secretary Clinton; Fawzia Habibi, Ministry of Women's Affairs; Najeeba Nuristani, Ministry of Education; Nazira Rahman, Ministry of Agriculture; Mina Sherzoy, USAID.

Ambassador Verveer, who serves as director of the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, traveled to Afghanistan on June 24. Last week, Ambassador Verveer underscored the U.S. commitment to women in Afghanistan and provided DipNote's readers some reflections about her travels to Kabul and Badghis.

Comments

Comments

Normita
|
California, USA
July 8, 2009

Normita in California writes:

Dear Secretary Clinton:

Thank you for your attention to the issue of Afghan women whose rights need to be in the forefront. Ambassador Verveer's story is an eye-opener not only to women but to all who are fortunate to live in a democratic society.

In your journey to villages around the world, may your courage and wisdom guide you in touching the hearts of many.

God bless,
Normita

Susan
|
Florida, USA
July 8, 2009

Susan in Florida writes:

It is good to see Secretary Clinton looking well and back on the job. To all the ladies with USAID and the U.S.-Afghan Women's Council, thank you for your work in improving women's situations in Afghanistan and around the world. A nation can not prosper if the women, and in turn the children, are mistreated. Stopping the abuse of women and children should be a priority for every country, for every government. It is a disgrace that human trafficking of women and children is growing worse. I feel we must do more to end this. A special thank you to Secretary Clinton for her dedication to and hard work on women's issues. On a lighter note.... do I see the Department of State emblem on your sling, Secretary Clinton? If so, that is a very nice touch. Very classy, and may I say very cool. I hope you are feeling better and out of pain.

Jennifer S.
|
West Virginia, USA
July 9, 2009

Jennifer S. in West Virginia writes:

I am grateful to see Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's and Ambassador Melanne Verveer's focus on Afghanistan and the status of women there. As Clinton proclaimed "Women's rights are human rights" so many years ago in Beijing and again reaffirmed her commitment to women's rights around the world during her confirmation hearing, she embodies the figure of speech of "when the rubber meets the road." Her actions support her words, and I am grateful that we have a Secretary of State who says what she means and means what she says!

I do hope that SOS Clinton and Ambassador Verveer will have an opportunity in the near future to meet with Arghand Cooperative founder Sarah Chayes. (http://www.arghand.org/) An award-winning journalist who reported for NPR in Afghanistan just after the fall of the Taliban, Chayes decided to give up her career and stay on in Afghanistan to help rebuild, to "speak truth to power" in a sense. She ended up founding a cooperative in Kandahar to employ local farmers and others to use their crops to make a licit (as opposed to illicit) living - rather than growing poppies for opium, they could use the fruits of their labor to make exquisite soaps and other fine skin care products. Author of The Punishment of Virtue: Inside Afghanistan After the Taliban, Chayes has been the guest of Bill Moyers, Rachel Maddow, and lots of NPR programs, which is how I learned about her and her good work. She, her work, her ideas and her commitment inspire me, and I have a feeling that they would inspire and inform Secretary of State Clinton and Ambassador Melanne Verveer as well!

Lastly, it's great to see SOS Clinton back on the stage, although I have no doubt that she's been working diligently behind the scenes. May your elbow continue to heal and may you find strength in the knowledge that we need you and we appreciate your commitment to helping women throughout the world to improve their lives!

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
July 9, 2009

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ Dipnote bloggers, It was good to read the recent BBC report that the Afghan family law has been reviewed and modified to address the human rights concerns expressed with the original legistlation.

I can only think this topic must have been on the agenda in this meeting.

Is there any further U.S. statement on the subject forthcoming?

Thanks,

EJ

Joe
|
Tennessee, USA
July 10, 2009

Joe in Tennessee writes:

You should have Ann Carlin with you in that picture, she was the most productive advocate for womens rights in the Middle East long before anyone else even cared...as far back as the 80s when I escorted her there after the Russians left.

No one would even talk to her other than a Judge because she was a woman; yet, she came under the direct orders of the President and DOS. She was the U.S. representative for negotiations on some very sensitive topics. They would speak to me because I was a male and holding a weapon and had been there before, yet had no authority other than that of her safety....She was the first U.S. representative, in all honesty, to continue efforts for female rights and the continued efforts of the U.S. by both administrations is evident.

Mrs. Clinton has not put human rights aside over politics and her continued efforts will aid us all in the long run. If you were there, you would understand how much has changed in such a short period of history.

Johnson
|
United States
July 13, 2009

Johnson writes:

She is good leader in afghan,,,,,,,,,,,

Shakila
|
District Of Columbia, USA
July 23, 2009

Shakila in Washington DC writes:

I had the privilege to have meet with these amazing Afghan women during a their visit as well as participation in a Symposium held by Bayat Foundation, aimed at creating a 'Trusted Afghan Network".

I have a set down with each women and heard their stories of about their professional victories, struggles and challenges. I wish I could post their interviews on this site, however, they were conducted in Dari.

They certainly need more support and assistance from this end in order to further continue their amazing, but challenging path to independence, economical and political equality and freedom.

Shakila Khalje
Afghan-American Journalist

Shakila K.
October 14, 2009

Shakila writes:

I had the privilege to meet with these amazing Afghan women during their visit as well as participation in a Symposium held by Bayat Foundation, aimed at creating a 'Trusted Afghan Network".

I had a set down with each women and heard their stories about their professional victories, struggles and challenges. I wish I could post their interviews on this site, however, they were conducted in Dari.

They certainly need more support and assistance from this end in order to further continue their amazing, but challenging path to independence, economical and political equality and freedom.

Shakila K.
Afghan-American Journalist/Women' rights advocate

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