The British Embassy is part-funding a joint Turkmen-Afghan workshop to promote gender equality in the Border Service. Organised by the OSCE and supported by the UK, Japan, Germany and Italy, the workshop will last three days and bring together Turkmen and Afghan border officials to equip them with the knowledge and skills to maintain and promote gender mainstreaming in border security.
Opening the workshop, British Ambassador Thorda Abbott-Watt welcomed Afghan colleagues and gave some of the rational for the workshop. Experience had shown that even in situations of conflict there were advantages to having women on your staff. Their presence alone sometimes defused tension and avoided the escalation of violence. And there were sound economic arguments.
If you fail to recruit women, you are reducing by half the pool of people on whom you can draw for one of the most important jobs in the country.