Malala Yousafzai (PAKISTAN)
IS THE WINNER OF THE 2013 RAW in WAR ANNA POLITKOVSKAYA AWARD
for women human rights defenders from war and conflict
16 year old Malala to accept the award from 104 year old human rights defender, Sir Nicholas Winton, known as “the British Schindler”
Today, Friday 4th October, RAW in WAR (Reach All Women in WAR) celebrates the courageous and inspiring work of Malala Yousafzai, the brave young woman from Pakistan who has courageously spoken out about the right of every girl and every boy around the world to receive an education. Defying the strict ban imposed by the Taliban on girls attending school, she refused to be silenced in the face of grave danger, just like Anna Politkovskaya did. Malala Yousafzai was only 15 years-old when she was shot by the Taliban on 9 October last year for campaigning for education for girls.
Ahead of the anniversary of Anna Politkovskaya’s murder on Monday 7th October RAW in WAR honours Malala with the 2013 Anna Politkovskaya Award for her courage to speak out when nobody else dared, for her strength to give a voice to the many women and girls, whose voices cannot be heard, and for her passionate belief in promoting education for girls.
On accepting the award Malala Yousafzai said:
“Anna Politkovskaya was a dedicated journalist and human rights activist. She campaigned passionately about issues, which concerned her. She spoke out about causes, which other people dared not speak about. She was brave and an inspiration. I am extremely proud to have been chosen to receive an award, which bears Anna’s name and hope that I may be as brave as she was. I greatly admire Anna’s dedication to truth, to equality, and to humanity.”
The RAW in WAR Nominations Committee for the 2013 Anna Politkovskaya Award was deeply humbled by the bravery and courage of Malala and by the determination with which she continues her campaign for education for girls, despite the threats she faces. She lives a life of courage and truth-telling in the face of grave danger, as Anna did.
On Malala receiving the 2013 Anna Politkovskaya Award, Lord Frank Judd, a member of the 2013 Award Nominations Committee, said:
”I am convinced that Anna would have been delighted. The courage and effectiveness of Anna and Malala are a huge challenge to us all.”
Anna Politkovskaya was a journalist in her forties, when she wrote against human rights abuses; Malala is only 16 and still continuing her education. However, like Anna, Malala believes that a pen is a powerful weapon and that education can stop people from falling for ideologies of hatred and violence. Like Anna Politkovskaya, Malala did not call for violence or revenge against those, who attacked her. Compassion, tolerance and remaining peaceful were principles that Anna held high in her life.
Malala Yousafzai will be accepting the award in person at the 2013 Anna Politkovskaya Award ceremony at the Southbank Centre, Purcell Room, Queen Elizabeth Hall.
The award will be presented by the “British Schindler”, 104 year old Sir Nicholas Winton, who in 1939 organized the rescue and saved the lives of 669 Jewish children from Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia, on the eve of the Second World War. Malala and Sir Nicholas are also the youngest and the oldest persons ever nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2013.
On presenting the award to Malala, Sir Nicholas Winton said:
“It’s a great pleasure to give this award to someone like Malala, who is so young and yet who is striving to make the world a better, more ethical place.”
On receiving the Anna Politkovskaya Award, Malala Yousafzai will join a group of remarkable women human rights defenders who received the Anna Politkovskaya Award in the past, including Marie Colvin (2012), Razan Zaitouneh (2011), Dr. Halima Bashir (2010), The One Million Signatures Campaign for Equality in Iran (2009), Malalai Joya (2008) and Natalia Estemirova (2007)
On the Anna Politkovskaya Awards, Azar Nafisi, author, “Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books”, said:
“It’s quite extraordinary, as well as natural, that we should celebrate the work of Anna through celebrating other courageous women who come from such different nations, backgrounds, and speak different languages but all share a common language in their desire for freedom. Not just for themselves but for all victims of oppression.”
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