Pakistani teenager honoured by Amnesty International

Tuesday 17 September 2013 22.09
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Malala Yousafzai, received the Amnesty award at a ceremony in the Mansion House Dublin
Malala Yousafzai, received the Amnesty award at a ceremony in the Mansion House Dublin
Malala Yousafzai is to share the Ambassador of Conscience Award with US singer Harry Belafonte
Malala Yousafzai is to share the Ambassador of Conscience Award with US singer Harry Belafonte

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager shot by the Taliban last year for campaigning for girls' education, has been honoured by Amnesty International in Dublin.

The 16-year-old shared the Ambassador of Conscience Award with US singer Harry Belafonte for his work on human rights and social justice.

Recipients are selected for showing exceptional leadership in the fight to protect and promote human rights and conscience.

The presentation ceremony took place in the Mansion House in Dublin where Malala called for education to be used as a weapon against war.

The teenager urged governments around the world to take action against inequality.

"With this powerful weapon of knowledge and education, we can fight against wars, terrorism, child labour and inequality," Malala said.

"The only tools that are needed are a pen and a book to get us on our way to an enlightened future for one and all."

She said war continues to be waged and human rights neglected all over the world and children are suffering from child labour and trafficking.

"You may be asking yourselves, 'what is the solution?"' she added."I believe the only solution is education, education, education.”

The 16-year-old schoolgirl was flown from Pakistan to the UK for emergency treatment last October after being shot in the head by a Taliban gunman.

She was targeted after campaigning for girls' rights to attend school.

Following the speech, Bono told the crowd Malala had to make a quick getaway from the ceremony to catch a flight home to make it to school on time tomorrow.

"Tonight we're not standing," he added.

"We're not standing because we're floored. We're floored because we're in the presence of this once in a century kind of courage."

The singer said Malala's courage was moving the world forward in its journey towards equality.

American singer Harry Belafonte was also honoured for his work on human rights and social justice. Pink Floyd's Roger Waters and singer, Petula Clark presented the King of Calypso with the honour.

The Ambassador of Conscience award is the human rights group's most prestigious award and recipients are selected for showing exceptional leadership in the fight to protect and promote human rights and conscience.

Amnesty said this year's winners have "used their individual voice to speak out on the part of many and, while separated by age, background and geography, they are united in their dedication to using education and art to overcome ignorance and brutality".

The award was inspired by a poem written for Amnesty by the late Seamus Heaney, called From the Republic of Conscience, and it aims to promote Amnesty's work by association with the life, work and example of its ambassadors.

The Nobel laureate, who died suddenly at the end of last month, had been due to attend the ceremony and read the poem.

Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager shot by the Taliban last year for campaigning for girls' education, has been honoured by Amnesty International in Dublin.

The 16-year-old shared the Ambassador of Conscience Award with US singer Harry Belafonte for his work on human rights and social justice.

Recipients are selected for showing exceptional leadership in the fight to protect and promote human rights and conscience.

The presentation ceremony took place in the Mansion House in Dublin today.

Keywords: malala yousafzai

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