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Thursday, October 18, 2012
From Print Edition
 
 

 

UNITED NATIONS: The United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Angelina Jolie has turned her attention to Malala Yousafzai, writing an opinion piece in defence of the 14-year-old girl’s struggle for educational equality. Angelina said Malala should be considered for a Nobel Peace Prize.

 

The Hollywood heavyweight’s missive has appeared at Daily Beast, and underlines Malala’s plight, framed by her children’s reactions to the teen’s attempted murder by the Taliban. “It was difficult for them to comprehend a world where men would try to kill a child whose only crime was the desire that she and others like her be allowed to go to school,” wrote the actress, who is engaged to Brad Pitt.

 

Malala is undergoing treatment in the UK after insurgents shot her in the head for her advocacy of equal-opportunity education. She is said to be making a “good recovery”.

 

Angelina suggested that the wounded girl — now something of a poster child for human rights — should be considered for a Nobel Peace Prize.

 

Malala Yousafzai was in a stable condition in the British hospital on Tuesday and well-wishers from around the world left her messages of support.

 

Malala Yousafzai “remains stable”, according to doctors monitoring her at the specialist Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham.

 

“She spent a second comfortable night at the hospital and continues to be cared for,” the hospital said.

 

Donations towards her care, which is being funded by the Pakistani government, are being received by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital’s charity while hundreds of people have left messages of support on the hospital’s website.

 

The well-wishers are from countries including Pakistan, Britain, India, the United States, Canada, Brazil, Myanmar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, New Zealand, Rwanda and the Netherlands.

 

“We the Pakistanis are so sorry that a little girl like you had to stand up for all of us. If we had shown some courage, you would have been safe and healthy today. Malala, get well please, we need you,” wrote Durre Nayab.“Please accept my and my family’s gratitude for what you have stood for. You are a true daughter of Pakistan. We are in your debt forever. Get well soon,” said Munir Pervaiz.

 

Ajmal Khan wrote: “You are the one who stood for a cause that you believed in and we salute your courage and your commitment towards your cherished goal.“I personally was in tears when I heard of your ordeal. But hopefully you will get well soon and start your mission again with the same spirit and agility.”

 

A message book has also been opened at Council House, the headquarters of Birmingham’s local authority.Birmingham has a 100,000-strong Pakistani community — a tenth of the city’s population.

 

Cards, letters and gifts to Malala are being handled by the city’s Pakistani consulate.Meanwhile, former British prime minister and UN Special Envoy for Global Education, Gordon Brown, said Unesco, inspired by the passion of Malala for education, was considering holding an international donors conference on education. He was speaking at an education conference being held in Paris under Unesco. Gordon Brown went on saying, “ I am the ambassador of Malala”.

 

He announced that he would visit Pakistan to pay homage to this courageous girl. He announced to work to raise funds for education in Pakistan from around the world, since he had been declared the UN special envoy for global education. He has already secured, with the assistance of UN secretary general, a funding of $1.5 billion.

 

Afghan President Hamid Karzai, in a letter to the Awami National Party (ANP) chief Asfandyar Wali Khan, said the voices being raised against the brutal attack on Malala should not recede. “Attack on Malala is considered as attack on all Afghan girls and people in Afghanistan are feeling pain over the tragic happening,” Karzai said, according to a press release of Bacha Khan Markaz in Peshawar.

 

In the letter, Karzai termed the attack on Malala as highly immoral and contrary to Islamic norms and Pakhtun tradition which strictly forbids assault on women, especially minor girls.The Afghan president said the people in Afghanistan were also facing such conspiracies where elements of obscurantism wanted to create hurdles in female education.

 

He also stressed upon the world community to give due importance to the voices raised in Pakistan and Afghanistan against militancy and those elements who wanted to push back their respective nations to the Stone Age.