Center for Politics to host Afghan leaders

A delegation of government officials from Afghanistan will arrive at the U.Va. Center for Politics on Sunday, July 3 to begin a three-week session focused on foundational principles of democratic governance as well as citizen participation and civic engagement in a democratic society.

This U.S.-Afghanistan Professional Partnership Program is part of the Center’s international outreach program, Global Perspectives on Democracy, which was launched in 2009. This is the second delegation from Afghanistan to participate in this program; the first was in Virginia from June 6 to June 25.

The 14 delegates are primarily female officials from Afghanistan’s Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Ministry of Justice, Supreme Court and Bureau for Reconstruction and Development.

Delegates will participate in lectures and presentations by prominent American legal scholars, jurists, and political figures, including Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson, Virginia Supreme Court Justice William Mims and Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. The group will also visit key sites related to the foundation of America’s democracy at a time when Afghanistan is building its own democratic government.

Delegates will participate in lectures at Virginia landmarks including Monticello, Montpelier, Jamestown and Williamsburg and make visits to Richmond, Virginia Beach and the Shenandoah National Park.

Delegates will also receive hands-on experience through job shadowing at Charlottesville-area nonprofit organizations. Class sessions will feature presentations by minority groups and dialogues on interfaith understanding.

The program is designed and run by the Center for Politics, as part of its Global Perspectives on Democracy initiative, in partnership with Relief International and sponsored by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. This is the second of four groups from Afghanistan who will participate in the program over the next two summers.

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