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Congratulating Malala

October 10, 2014

Malala Yousufzai, a devout Muslim teenager, has become the youngest recipient ever of any of the Nobel Prizes since these awards were established about a century ago. In the dark world of patriarchy, she bravely reclaimed her right to education and freedom in Afghanistan.  On a visit to Nigeria, she boldly told Boko Haram who had just kidnapped the Chibok schoolgirls: “stop misusing the name of Islam.” So, despite her young age, Malala properly understood the liberating message of Islam and practiced it.  She bravely fought for her right and the right of her Muslim sisters to an education. But how did Malala get her enlightened understanding of Islam? To find the answer, we need to recognize [and admire] Malala’s own context. Mustafa Qadri, a Pakistani researcher for Amnesty International noted that:  “Ziauddin Yousafzai  [Malala’s father] is a deeply religious man, in the best sense of the term. I remember him constantly talking about his Islam and that it tells him to get his daughter educated and to make sure that women get the same rights as men. Her father is very brave, very eloquent, as is Malala.” Qadri’s comments underline the fact that “it takes a village to raise a child.” It is also important to realize, as did Malala, that she is not alone in her courage. Many young Muslim girls continue to go to school every day despite the dangers surrounding them. This is why Malala is fighting not only for education but for peace as well.  After meeting President Obama, she said: “I also expressed my concerns that drone attacks are fueling 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.” Wise words from a young teenager who is wise beyond her years! Congratulation Malala from all of us, your sisters at KARAMAH! We also pay our respects to all the sisters (brothers and parents) around the globe who uphold a gender equitable understanding of Islam, who fight for women’s rights, and strive for education in a peaceful world.

August 2017 September 2017 October 2017

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