U.S. Senators Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) are leading all 24 female senators in a bipartisan letter to President Joe Biden calling on him to protect the rights of Afghan women and girls following the U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan.
In a letter to the President, Ernst, Feinstein, and their colleagues write, “In the wake of the U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan, we write to urge your Administration to develop an interagency plan to preserve the political, economic, social, and basic human rights of Afghan women and girls.”
They continue, “Last year an estimated 3.5 million girls were in school, with 100,000 women enrolled in public and private universities. Women also began to succeed in business and government…However, lacking a legitimate Afghan government and military forces to protect them, women and girls are now suffering the predations of a Taliban regime with a track record of brutalizing, isolating, and denying them life and liberty.”
“You have committed to press the Taliban to uphold the rights of women and girls, and you have stated that America will maintain an enduring partnership with the people of Afghanistan resisting Taliban rule. We will advise, support, and enable those efforts through legislation and engagement with your Administration. Afghan women and girls need our action now.”
To read the full letter, click here.
In addition to Ernst and Feinstein, the letter is signed by every sitting female U.S. Senator, Susan Collins (R-Maine), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Tina Smith (Minn.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).