UN declares Nov 10 Malala Day

Saturday was a watershed in Malala Yosufzai’s life after the United Nations declared November 10 “Malala Day,” while the Pakistani government announced that she would be made the country’s brand ambassador for education.

Students surround a ‘Malala Rangoli’ at H B Kapadia New High School in Ahmedabad on Saturday. AFP

Malala, 15, who had aggressively campaigned for girl’s education in Pakistan, was injured after Taliban pumped bullets in her head and neck on October 9 for “promoting secularism.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Envoy for Global Education, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, said: “This Saturday (November 10) will see Malala Day, a global event to show the world that people of all creeds, all sexes, all backgrounds and all countries stand behind Malala. We are Malala. This is Malala day. The world to walk in the footsteps of this girl of courage. Malala Yousafzai has become a global icon of hope, an international symbol of courage, a schoolgirl who has won the hearts of millions through her bravery.”

The UN chief said citizens from across the globe are speaking out for Malala and on behalf of the 61 million children who do not go to school.

“I am adding my voice to the messages from over one million people across the globe. Education is a fundamental human right. It is a pathway to development, tolerance and global citizenship,” Ban Ki-moon said in a brief video message posted on the UN website.

Meanwhile, Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari will formally declare Malala the brand ambassador of education on December 10, at an education conference to be jointly hosted by Pakistan and Unesco in Paris.

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