Ivanka Trump shows support for Afghan girls' robotics team that had visas denied

As Washington continues to reel after news broke this week of Donald Trump Jr.'s meeting with a lawyer tied to the Russian government, another Trump child is focusing her attention on a different topic: robotics?

Ivanka Trump had warm words of welcome for a team of six Afghan girls that will be competing in an international robotics contest next week after the girls initially had their visas denied.

"I look forward to welcoming this brilliant team of Afghan girls, and their competitors, to Washington DC next week! #WomenInSTEM," Trump tweeted Wednesday.

The six girls were the only team of the 162 nations competing that had their application rejected, the Associated Press reported Monday. However, the State Department granted them entry Wednesday after having denied them twice, according to a statement from the competition organizers. Politico reported that their entry came at the urging of President Trump.

Ivanka's welcome to the team comes less than a week after she faced scrutiny for taking her father's seat at the G-20 summit in Hamburg as he met with other world leaders. She has also worked on women's issues since taking on a role in the White House.

In a country where girls often face enormous educational barriers, the six Afghan girls had additional obstacles to be able to compete in the tournament. The team had to travel 500 miles to U.S. Embassy in Kabul each time they submitted a visa application for the competition, the Associated Press reported.

Competitors at this year's First Global Challenge robotics contest will be tasked with engineering projects related to providing access to clean water.

Follow Ryan Miller on Twitter @RyanW_Miller

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