At UN, Malala Yousafzai rallies youth to stand up for universal education
an article by United Nations News Centre
Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani schoolgirl who was
shot by the Taliban for attending classes, today [12
July] addressed hundreds of young people at the
United Nations, urging them to use education as a
weapon against extremism.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with Malala Yousafzai, the young education rights campaigner from Pakistan. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe
click on photo to enlarge
“Let us pick up our books and our pens. They are our
most powerful weapons. One teacher, one book, one
pen, can change the world,” Ms. Yousafzai said, in
an impassioned address to the UN Youth Assembly.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has dubbed today –
Ms. Yousafzai’s 16th birthday – ‘Malala Day’ in
honour of her heroic stand to ensure education for
all. The meeting, which featured nearly 1,000
youth leaders, was addressed by former United
Kingdom Prime Minister Gordon Brown, in his
capacity as UN Special Envoy for Global Education,
and Vuk Jeremic, President of the General
Assembly.Let us pick up our books and our pens.
They are our most powerful weapons. One teacher,
one book, one pen, can change the world.
Ms. Yousafzai told the gathering that the Taliban’s
attack nine months ago changed nothing in her life,
except that “weakness, fear and hopelessness died.”
“The extremists were, and they are, afraid of books
and pens,” she said. “The power of education
frightens them. They are afraid of women.”
Globally, the number of children out of school has
fallen from 60 million in 2008 to 57 million in
2011. However, 28 million children out of school
live in the world’s conflict zones, and more than
half of those are women and girls.
Mr. Ban welcomed Ms. Yousafzai, praising her courage
“Malala chose to mark her 16th birthday with the
world,” he said, noting that the strong support she
has received from millions of people all over the
world is a clear sign saying: “Malala you are not
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Question(s) related to this article:
What is the relation between peace and education?,
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Letter from Mohatma Gandhi to Maria Montessori.
To Madame Montessori
Even as you, out of your love for children, are endeavoring to teach children, through your numerous institution, the best that can be brought out of them, even so, I hope that it will be possible not only for the children of the wealthy and the well-to-do, but for the children of paupers to receive training of this nature. You have very truly remarked that if we are to reach real peace in this world and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with children and if they will grow up in their natural innocence, we won't have the struggle, we won't have to pass fruitless idle resolutions, but we shall go from love to love and peace to peace, until at last all the corners of the world are covered with that peace and love for which, consciously or unconsciously, the whole world is hungering.
Mohatma Gandhi, Young India, 19-11-''31