Afghan girls robotics team to compete after visa obstacles

The team was twice rejected for U.S. visas

Afghanistan's FIRST Global Challenge team member Lida Azizi, from left, Fatemah Qaderyan, and Rodaba Noori meet with reporters following the opening ceremony in Washington, Sunday, July 16, 2017. Twice rejected for U.S. visas, the all-girls robotics team arrived in Washington on Saturday and will compete against entrants from more than 150 countries in the three-day high school competition. It's the first annual robotics competition designed to encourage youths to pursue careers in math and science. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
Afghanistan's FIRST Global Challenge team member Lida Azizi, from left, Fatemah Qaderyan, and Rodaba Noori meet with reporters following the opening ceremony in Washington, Sunday, July 16, 2017. Twice rejected for U.S. visas, the all-girls robotics team arrived in Washington on Saturday and will compete against entrants from more than 150 countries in the three-day high school competition. It's the first annual robotics competition designed to encourage youths to pursue careers in math and science. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

WASHINGTON (AP) — A robotics team of six girls from Afghanistan is attending an international competition in Washington, after clearing visa obstacles that prompted intervention from President Donald Trump.

The team was the first to be introduced at an opening ceremony Sunday for the three-day high school competition.

They will compete against entrants from more than 150 countries in the FIRST Global Challenge. It’s the first annual robotics competition designed to encourage youths to pursue careers in math and science.

The girls are entering a robot they made that can recognize blue and orange and sort balls into correct locations.

The team was twice rejected for U.S. visas. They arrived in Washington from their hometown of Herat, Afghanistan, early Saturday after Trump’s last-minute intervention to sidestep the visa system.