JavaScript Menu, DHTML Menu Powered By Milonic


Join our e-mail mailing
list and receive our
monthly newsletter free
of charge

News and Views

Mrs. Khojesta Ebrahimkhel, Chargé d’Affaires, met with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and members of the US-Afghan Women’s Council


Washington, D.C., October 22nd 2010

Mrs. Khojesta Ebrahimkhel, Chargé d’Affaires, met with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and members of the US-Afghan Women’s Council today for a formal presentation of the Council’s projects. The meeting began with welcomes from Ambassador Melanne Verveer,  Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues, and  Secretary of State Hillary Clinton . Honorary Advisor Mrs. Laura W. Bush, joining the group via teleconference, offered her greetings and comments.  Council Chair Dr. John DeGioia, President of Georgetown University also welcomed the group.


Chargé d’Affaires Mrs. Khojesta Ebrahimkhel then conveyed official messages of Dr. Zalmai Rassoul, Minister of  Foreign Affairs and co-Chair of the US-Afghan Women’s Council:

“The people of Afghanistan, particularly women, have endured unacceptable levels of violence, cruelty, displacement in and outside the country, and the loss of their family members and loved ones, over the past three decades of war.

Fortunately, however, after the fall of the Taliban, the Government of Afghanistan, in partnership with the international community and the United States in particular, has taken a number of concrete steps towards improving the lives of women and their general status in the society.

Indeed, in light of women’s equal rights under the Afghan Constitution, our achievements have so far been significant. Despite our progress, however, women in Afghanistan continue to face violence, security threats, and many other challenges—which we hope to overcome with the continued support of the international community.

I would like to thank the Government and people of the United States for their overall assistance to Afghanistan, particularly for their aid with building the capacity of Afghan women.

Once again, I appreciate the efforts of the Council staff for organizing this meeting, and wish the participants a good meeting”.


Then Mrs. Ebrahimkhel quoted from the message of Husn Banu Ghazanfar, Acting Minister of Women’s Affairs, who also serves as a Council co-Chair. Minister Ghazanfar enumerated the recent achievements of the Government of Afghanistan in continuing to ensure gender equity:

“1.The completion of a 10-year working plan to improve the socio-economic status of women, as we have already begun implementing some of the plan’s programs.

2. Completion and approval by the President of the anti-violence against women law.

3. Completion of family law.

4. Completion of protection of orphaned children law.

5. Finalizing law for aid to women, children, and elderly without family.

6. Formation of anti-violence against women commission

7. Formulation of policy to improve the status of imprisoned women and their access to justice”.

In her own remarks, Mrs. Ebrahimkhel spoke from her own experience and with a hope for the future for all Afghan women:

“I learned something in my long years of working with Afghan, American, German, and European women in general: there is nothing that we cannot do together as women, in the spirit of cooperation with each other.

We must be very cautious and careful now because we are at an important moment. We can build schools, but building the roads and bringing children to school is another matter.  We had more women running for office in our September Parliamentary Elections, but tragically these women were targets of insurgent killers.


Peace is on the horizon, and the best version of peace for women and children is for us to help provide them with awareness, education, and opportunities. Speaking as an Afghan woman, wife, and mother of four children, my hope is that we will continue to rely on each other for strength, comfort, and the new ideas that will allow women to help carry Afghanistan to a prosperous future for all her people”.

Next, Secretary Clinton delivered remarks which outlined her goals for Afghanistan, and the Council’s key members offered Sec. Clinton a summary of Council projects and activities.  The group entered into a lively dialogue and exchange of ideas on future collaboration. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan later assumed the helm of the meeting when Secretary Clinton was called to her other duties and the discussion continued well into the afternoon.  The formal exchange was followed by a reception afterwards.

The group of 43 participants included Ms. Masooda Abdul Kaliq and  Ms. Malalai Jawad ,  Afghan businesswomen graduates of 10,000 Women initiative, current Project Artemis scholars, Ambassador Said Jawad,  Foundation for Afghanistan and Mrs. Shamim Jawad, Founder and Chair of The Ayenda Foundation,  Ms. Diana Rowan Rockefeller- Founder and Chair, Afghan Women Leaders Connect, and Dr. Terry Neese - President of the Institute for the Economic Empowerment of Women.

The U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council is a public-private partnership, created in 2002 by Presidents George W. Bush and Hamid Karzai, and homed at Georgetown University. It connects the U.S. and Afghan governments, the private sector, academia, and non-governmental organizations to develop and implement initiatives in support of Afghan women and children.

The Council is chaired by the President of Georgetown University, Dr. John DeGioia; the U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, Melanne Verveer; and the Foreign Minister and Minister of Women’s Affairs of Afghanistan. The Council is under the direction of Dr. Phyllis Magrab, Director of Georgetown’s Center for Child and Human Development, who serves as the Council’s Vice Chair. Mrs. Laura Bush serves as Honorary Advisor in reflection of her continued commitment to Afghan women and girls.

The Council uses its network to identify needs in Afghanistan, to convene interested partners to develop proposals, and to help broker connections for implementation. The Council also organizes training programs and capacity-building consultations for Afghan women traveling to the United States.

Council members are leaders in government, the private sector, and philanthropy who spearhead initiatives to advance opportunities for Afghan women and girls in the areas of literacy and education, entrepreneurship, political leadership, and health care. The Council also partners with a broad network of affinity groups around areas for collaboration.


Home | Contact Us | Sitemap © 2006 Embassy of Afghanistan and GlobeScope Inc. All Rights Reserved.