Katie Elbert, Inclusive Security, 617.995.1925,
Alexandra Taylor, NATO,,
Lara Youssef, Office of MEP Veronique de Keyser, 00.32.498.41.45.73
Women Leaders from Afghanistan Team Up with NATO and EP

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM – February 22, 2007 – The future of Afghanistan depends upon recognizing and enhancing the critical role women play in ensuring security and building democracy.  Despite progress over the last five years, Afghan women continue to face significant obstacles to their full participation in reconstruction.  Additionally, escalating violence, especially in the south, threatens to undermine advances.  

From Saturday, February 24 through Friday, March 2, The Initiative for Inclusive Security and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Public Diplomacy Division will host 13 distinguished Afghan women leaders in government and civil society for a weeklong workshop, Inclusive Security: A Roadmap for Afghanistan, in hopes of reversing this trend.  This program will be led in part by Ambassador Swanee Hunt, chair, The Initiative for Inclusive Security, and Dr. Stefanie Babst, Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Communications Coordination, Public Diplomacy Division, NATO.  This unprecedented workshop convening Afghan women leaders and high-level NATO civilian and military personnel will reinforce the participation of Afghan women at every level of the political process and empower them in rebuilding with the support and cooperation of NATO.

Furthermore, on Monday, February 26, MEP Veronique de Keyser and the Women’s Rights Commission of the European Parliament will welcome the delegation and Ambassador Hunt for a press conference and public hearing at the European Parliament where they will outline specific ways women can help consolidate peace and lead reconstruction.  

Don’t miss this exceptional opportunity to develop a relationship with important leaders who can assist you in evaluating Afghanistan’s rebuilding and the importance of including women in the peace building process.

Press Conference at European Parliament
WHO:          Ambassador Swanee Hunt, chair, The Initiative for Inclusive Security; MEP Veronique de Keyser; Delegation of Afghan women leaders (see attached list of participants).
WHERE:  European Parliament, Press Room PHS 0A50
WHEN:  Monday, February 26th, 2:00 PM

Public Hearing at the European Parliament
WHO:          Delegation of Afghan women leaders to testify before Members of European Parliament
WHERE:  European Parliament, Room ASP 3G2
WHEN:        Monday, February 26th, 3:00 PM

Katie Elbert  |  Media Relations Manager
Hunt Alternatives Fund  |  625 Mount Auburn Street  |  Cambridge MA 02138
office: 617.995.1925 | cell:  617.803.5755 | fax: 617.995.1982

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