Afghan girls robotics team to compete after visa obstacles

A robotics team of six girls from Afghanistan is attending an international competition in Washington, after clearing visa obstacles that prompted intervention from President Donald Trump.

Washington | Published:July 17, 2017 1:33 pm
Afghanistan women's robotics team, robotics, visa ban Afghanistan team member Lisa Azizi troubleshoots the team’s robot entry prior to the opening ceremony for the FIRST Global Challenge in Washington, Sunday, July 16, 2017. They will be competing against entrants from more than 150 countries in the international competition. It’s the first annual robotics competition designed to encourage youths to pursue careers in math and science. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

A robotics team of six girls from Afghanistan is attending an international competition in Washington, after clearing visa obstacles that prompted intervention from US President Donald Trump.

The team was the first to be introduced at an opening ceremony Sunday for the three-day high school competition.

They will compete against entrants from more than 150 countries in the FIRST Global Challenge. It’s the first annual robotics competition designed to encourage youths to pursue careers in math and science.

The girls are entering a robot they made that can recognize blue and orange and sort balls into correct locations.

Team Afghanistan participates in the opening ceremony for the FIRST Global Challenge in Washington, Sunday, July 16, 2017. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen) Afghanistan team member Kwasar Rashan, center, walks with her teammates to line-up for the opening ceremony march of the FIRST Global Challenge 2017. Afghanistan team member Lisa Azizi trouble shoots the teams robot entry prior to the opening ceremony. (AP phpto) Afghanistan team member Somaya Faryuqi, right, has the flag of Afghanistan drawn on her cheek prior to the opening ceremony. (AP Photo) Afghanistan team member Kwasar Rashan holds the Afghan flag while waiting for the opening ceremony march of the FIRST Global Challenge 2017. (AP Photo)

The team was twice rejected for U.S. visas. They arrived in Washington from their hometown of Herat, Afghanistan, early Saturday after Trump’s last-minute intervention to sidestep the visa system.

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  1. L
    Love Others
    Jul 17, 2017 at 3:31 pm
    This is beautiful. These girls have done a great job. Afghan people are going to do great things. They have suffered a lot. My best wishes with them.
    Reply