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U.S. Senator Capito leads bipartisan Congressional Delegate to Indo-Pacific region

Members received briefings on Hawaii wildfires, U.S. and Indo-Pacific security and energy matters, discussed empowerment of women and girls with Women’s World Cup leaders

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — A congressional delegation (CODEL), led by U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito , R-W.Va., recently returned to the United States after traveling to Pearl Harbor, Australia, and New Zealand. In addition to Senator Capito, the delegation included Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) and Representatives Chrissy Houlahan, D-Pa.-06, Kathy Castor, D-Fla.-14, and Nicole Malliotakis, R-N.Y.-11.

U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito

During the trip, the delegation engaged with senior leaders throughout the Indo-Pacific to discuss a variety of topics, including domestic and international security matters and energy issues throughout the region. The members also engaged with senior leaders at the Women’s World Cup to discuss the empowerment of women and girls. Additionally, the delegation visited the U.S. Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, where they met with Commander Admiral Samuel J. Paparo Jr., and General Charles Flynn, who is coordinating defense support to civil authorities for the wildfire response in Hawaii.

“Through this series of visits, we had the opportunity to meet with senior leaders in the Indo-Pacific on matters that impact our nation and our allies, and to learn more about our country’s response to the devastating wildfires in Hawaii. I’m thankful to grow our relationship with leaders in the Pacific, as well as in both Australia and New Zealand regarding the importance of bilateral ties and partnerships between our nations. Additionally, it was encouraging to engage with leaders of the Women’s World Cup and discuss ways that we can capitalize on momentum to grow women and girls empowerment efforts. I look forward to applying the information gained during this trip through my work in the U.S. Senate,” Senator Capito said.

“Our bipartisan all-female congressional delegation to the Indo-Pacific region sent a strong message as we explored into the security and economic issues that affect our nation and that region.  Our visit also underscored the value in encouraging and highlighting women in athletics in the same way we support men’s athletics, a goal that can help inspire more young women to reach their athletic potential and dreams,” Senator Hyde-Smith said.

“This CODEL has been eye opening for me, but it also served as a stark reminder of the important effect that women and girls can have on our national and global security,” Rep. Houlahan said. “I was proud to see that the progress we are making here at home in the U.S. on gender equity is running parallel to progress being made by our Indo-Pacific partners. I want to thank Senator Capito for bringing this bipartisan, bicameral coalition together. We know that when everyone is included, we build a stronger and safer world.”

“Our bipartisan delegation to the Indo-Pacific region demonstrates that America is strengthening bilateral relationships across the region. Senator Capito led our delegation in engaging with military, business and diplomatic leaders regarding new opportunities to bolster our national and economic security. I am grateful to the many men and women we met who are serving across the region, particularly those who are coordinating response to the devastating wildfires in Hawaii. I look forward to working to strengthen our partnerships in the region while supporting the empowerment of women and girls globally,” Rep. Castor said.

“In a short period of time, we were able to learn ways Congress can support our service members and military leadership in the Indo-Pacific, expand free trade with our allies to diversify supply chains and reduce reliability on Communist China, and empower women around the globe. It is evident that Australia and New Zealand are two strategic and key allies and the mission of the Five Eyes and AUKUS intelligence and military partnerships is more critical today than ever,” Rep. Malliotakis said.

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