U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Wednesday announced the appointment of Rina Amiri as special envoy for Afghan women, girls, and human rights.
The appointment comes as women in the country are facing increasing oppression by the ruling Taliban following the U.S. withdrawal in August.
Earlier this week, the Taliban announced that women would no longer be able to travel long distances without a male escort. Women already faced severe restrictions on education and work.
“We desire a peaceful, stable and secure Afghanistan, where all Afghans can live and thrive in political, economic and social inclusivity,” Blinken said in a statement.
Amiri is an Afghan-born scholar who served in the State Department under former president Barack Obama. She has spent two decades advising governments and the United Nations on Afghanistan issues.
According to Reuters, the Biden administration faced harsh criticism from women’s rights groups for failing to guard the lives and ensure safe passage of female activists in Afghanistan. Amiri was one of those critics, the news agency reported.
Some information in this report comes from Agence France-Presse and Reuters.