Malala Yousafzai meets Barack Obama, Michelle Obama and Malia Obama in the Oval Office
Pakistani teenage activist Malala Yusufzai has told the US President that drone strikes in her country are "fuelling terrorism". The 16-year-old schoolgirl, who was shot in the head and neck by Taliban gunmen who attacked her school bus in Pakistan's Swat Valley, met Barack Obama and the First Lady in the White House.
"I thanked President Obama for the United States' work in supporting education in Pakistan and Afghanistan and for Syrian refugees," she said after the meeting. "I also expressed my concerns that drone attacks are fuelling terrorism. Innocent victims are killed in these acts, and they lead to resentment among the Pakistani people. If we refocus efforts on education it will make a big impact."
Pakistani school girl Malala Yousafzai, 16, rose to international fame when she was shot in the head last October for speaking out against the Taliban's ban on girl's education. Malala made a remarkable recovery, becoming the youngest nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by the Taliban, has met the Queen at Buckingham Palace and spoken to her about the importance of education.
Malala Yousafzai, the teenage Pakistani activist who has risked her life campaigning for girls’ right to education, took a rare holiday from school on Friday when she met with Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace.
“I had to miss school because I was meeting the queen,” she told reporters at the event. “It's such an honor for me to be here at Buckingham Palace. It's really an honor to meet the queen. I also wanted to raise the issue of girls not being educated on a higher platform so that the government in each country takes action on it.We need to fight for education in the suffering countries and developing countries, but also here.”
Malala Yousafzai gives a copy of her book to Queen Elizabeth II during a Reception for Youth, Education and the Commonwealth at Buckingham Palace in London on October 18, 2013. The 16-year-old, who was shot by the Taliban for championing girls' rights to an education, met Queen Elizabeth at a reception for youth, education and the Commonwealth.
Malala, accompanied by her father, gave the queen a copy of her autobiography, "I Am Malala," telling her: "It is a great honor for me to be here, and I wanted to present you with this book." Accepting the gift, the 87-year-old monarch replied: "That's very kind of you."
Malala told the queen, who is head of the Commonwealth, that she was passionate about every child around the world having a right to an education. "Especially in this country as well," she added. "I have heard about many children that can't go to school, and I want to continue our work." Prince Philip, 92, joked that in Britain, people wanted their children to go to school to get them out of the house – a comment that left Malala covering her face in a fit of giggles.
Malala also got the chance to meet Princess Beatrice [PA]
Malala Yousafzai may not have won the Nobel Peace Prize , but she did get to meet with President Obama and the first family.
Malala Yousafzai, who survived an assassination attempt by the Taliban, will be reunited with two friends injured in the same attack today. Malala, 16, was shot in the head while travelling on a school bus in Pakistan last October as her outspoken views on education and women's rights got her into trouble with the Afghan group.
Two Pakistani teenagers shot by the Taliban while travelling with their friend Malala Yousafzai have been given scholarships at an international school in Wales. Shazia Ramzan and her friend Kainat Riaz were caught in crossfire last October when a gunman shot education campaigner Malala after school. Malala was also offered a scholarship by Atlantic College, Vale of Glamorgan, but is continuing her studies elsewhere.
When Malala Yousafzai woke from the coma the Taliban put her in, she was aware of only a few things. “Yes, Malala, you were shot,” she told herself. She thought back to her dreams – of lying on a stretcher, being in some distant place far from home and school – and realized that they weren’t dreams, but recollections. “The nurses and doctors, everyone was speaking in English,” she recalls. “I realized that now I am not in Pakistan.”
All Malala Yousafzai wanted was to go to school. But she lived in an area of Pakistan, the Swat Valley, where the Taliban had effectively taken over governance, and imposed its harsh ideology – of no music, no visible women, and certainly no girls in school. For defying their will, and refusing to stay silent, the Taliban tried to murder Malala, then a 15-year-old girl.
Miraculously, she survived, and has continued speaking truth to power about education, extremism, and equality. Almost a year to the day after the attempt on her life, Malala, and her father Ziauddin, spoke with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in front of a live town hall audience at the 92nd Street Y in New York.