Saturday, July 13, 2013

 

Malala Yousafzai marks 16th birthday with UN speech.- #MalalaDay

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teen shot in the head by the Taliban, speaks before the United Nations about universal education.


Malala speaks at the United Nations: Malala Yousafzai
Malala Yousafzai speaking at the United Nations on her 16th birthday.

Malala Yousafzai speaking at the United Nations on her 16th birthday.

NEW YORK — It's #MalalaDay at the United Nations. Malala Yousafzai — the 16-year-old Pakistani shot by the Taliban on her school bus for speaking out about education for girls — made her first public speech since the shooting, at the U.N. on her 16th birthday. She spoke about universal education to a youth assembly of more than 500 young people from more than 100 countries at the U.N. headquarters in New York.

"Do remember one thing. Malala Day is not my day," she said. "Today is the day of every woman, every boy and every girl who has raised their voice for their rights.

"We realize the importance of light when we see darkness," she said. "We realize the importance of our voice when we are silenced.

We realized the importance of pens and books when we saw the guns. ... The saying 'The pen is mightier than the sword' is true. The extremists, they are afraid of books and pens. The power of education frightens them."

The U.N. welcomed Malala by wishing her a happy birthday and calling her "the most courageous girl in the world."

Malala Yousafzai: 'Power and courage was born'Malala's father, mother and two brothers were in attendance, along with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.


"Most of us celebrate a birthday with a party. Malala chose to mark her 16th birthday at the United Nations celebrating her cause for education," the secretary-general said, introducing her.


"She's calling on us to keep our promises, invest in young people and put education first."

In her speech, Malala called on young people to take action and speak out.

"Our words can change the whole world because we are all together, united for the cause of education," she said. "Let us empower ourselves with the weapon of knowledge, and let us shield ourselves with unity and togetherness."

She also thanked everyone who prayed for her recovery. "I cannot believe how much love people have shown me," she said.

Calling books and pens the most powerful weapons in the world, she ended her speech by saying, "One child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world. Education is the only solution. Education first."

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