After much public outcry, the USA government has relented and given a team of Afghan girl robotic engineers the visas to enter a competition.
The third time's the charm for war-torn Afghanistan's all girls team who have been applying for USA visas to compete in an global robotics competition in Washington D.C.
"Seventeen years ago, this would not have been possible at all", said Afghan Ambassador Hamdullah Mohib. We could not be prouder of this delegation of young women who are also scientists - they represent the best of the Afghan people and embody the promise that their aspirations can be fulfilled. "These girls will be proving to the world and the nation that nothing will prevent us from being an equal and active member of the global community".
Many saw them as innocent victims of the harsher immigration barriers, especially from predominantly Muslim countries, taken up under US President Donald Trump's administration.
Left unmentioned by Conway is the fact the Trump administration is now fighting in federal court to implement a travel ban that would bar nationals of six Muslim-majority countries from entering the US.
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Trump only "acted" after the girls' visas had been denied twice, and the story had brought bad publicity to his Muslim ban.
On Tuesday, U.S congressman Joe Courtney and congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici sent a letter signed by 53 members of the United States House of Representatives to the U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson urging him to issue visas for the girls.
The U.S. won't say why the girls were rejected for visas, citing confidentiality. "We applied again for the USA visa and we were rejected again". It's a fate that has beset many Afghans seeking entry to the U.S.in recent years as continuing violence and economic challenges lead many to seek asylum in America, or to travel through the U.S.to Canada to try to resettle there. She commended Trump for personally intervening to allow them entry.
After that, they were told they were not allowed to compete because of travel issues not once, but twice. The U.S. granted parole after determining that it constituted a "significant public benefit".
"Our acting special rep to #Afghanistan/#Pakistan welcomes #AfghanRoboticsTeam to USA! This is such an important trip for us", she said. When their visas were refused, they planned to compete via Skype. They'll also be feted at a hastily arranged reception at the Embassy of Afghanistan attended by supporters who had petitioned the U.S.to let them in.