Clinton in Plea for Rights of Afghan Women
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a powerful plea Sunday for the rights of women in Afghanistan, using a global forum to insist that they must be part of the country’s future growth.
“The United States believes strongly that no nation can achieve peace, stability and economic growth if half the population is not empowered,” she told the Tokyo conference on Afghanistan.
Clinton said the way forward “must include fighting corruption, improving governance, strengthening the rule of law (and providing) access to economic opportunity for all Afghans, especially for women”.
“All citizens need to have the chance to benefit from and contribute to Afghanistan’s progress. The United States will continue to stand strongly by the women of Afghanistan.”
Top diplomat Clinton was addressing a world conference aiming to chart a way forward for the nation after NATO combat troops withdraw in 2014.
The talks have already raised pledges of $16 billion in civilian aid for the conflict-torn nation over the next four years.
Representatives from more than 80 nations and international organisations gathering in the Japanese capital later adopted the “Tokyo Declaration”, pledging support and cash for Kabul.