Wagner Introduces Afghan WIN Act
Washington, D.C. — Congresswoman Ann Wagner (R-MO) this week introduced H.R. 4097, the Afghan Women’s Inclusion in Negotiations Act, or the Afghan WIN Act. Congresswoman Wagner was joined by Members of Congress Bill Keating (D-MA), Lois Frankel (D-FL), and Joe Wilson (R-SC) in introducing this legislation.
“Women bring invaluable insight to the negotiating table and are critical participants in any processes aimed at solving complex crises and achieving peace,” said Congresswoman Wagner. “Afghan women have continued to fight for greater rights and opportunities since the fall of the Taliban government, and their unique and diverse experiences as advocates for peace and equality will help move the peace process forward and bring an end to ongoing violence in the country.”
“Women’s participation in peace negotiations has time and time again proven to lead to more lasting peace agreements. That is why we introduced the Afghan WIN Act: so that everything that Americans, Afghans, and allies alike have fought for and sacrificed to secure a peaceful and stable future for Afghanistan has not been in vain. Afghan women continue to risk their lives to root out terrorism in their communities, build a better future for Afghan children, and fight for democratic reforms that will bring greater safety and security for all Afghan people,” said Congressman Keating. “It is easy to forget that the atrocities and human rights abuses committed against women and girls were a major reason for continuing our fight in Afghanistan, and in recent decades, women have made incredible gains. Today, women are active participants in their communities and in the economy, they vote in elections, they work in universities and in medical professions, they are entrepreneurs, and they represent Afghan citizens in the National Assembly, ministries, local government, and in Afghanistan’s diplomatic corps. In this pivotal moment - as negotiations are ongoing to hopefully bring this conflict to a peaceful resolution - we cannot let up on our commitment to women and their meaningful participation during and after the peace process. Afghanistan’s future and our own national security depends on it.”
“When women are empowered their communities are more prosperous and secure. When women have a seat at the table, peace negotiations are more likely to succeed,” said Congresswoman Frankel. “The advances made by Afghan women must not be turned back.”
“As the current Afghan negotiations proceed, it is imperative that the United States insist on women having a seat at the table,” said Congressman Wilson. “I’m grateful to Congressman Keating for sending a clear message to all the stakeholders in the ongoing Afghan negotiations: the rights and freedoms of women and girls are inviolable.”
The Afghan WIN Act addresses the critical role women have played in advancing peace, stability, and democracy in Afghanistan and reaffirms U.S. policy to ensure Afghan women have the support and opportunity to meaningfully participate in the ongoing peace negotiations. The bill requires that the State Department report to Congress on efforts to include women in the negotiations, and prepare a strategy for U.S. engagement in Afghanistan after a peace deal is reached to ensure any commitments made with respect to the rights of women and girls are fully implemented.