Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Song for Malala Yousafzai

Some of you may be following the story about education rights activist Malala Yousafzai who was shot by the Taliban for campaigning for girls' education recently in Pakistan.  Despite an attempted assassination at the tender age of 15 she's currently stable in hospital and doctors say she may make a full recovery.  The Pakistan Taliban have claimed responsibility for the attack and have vowed to kill her if she recovers.

In the last few weeks she has rapidly become a global symbol of courage in the face of oppression.  The I Am Malala petition set up by the UN Special Envoy for Global Education is approaching a million signatories and rallies of solidarity have been held for her in Karachi, Pakistan.

In an interview with CNN in 2011 she said the following:

"I have the right of education, I have the right to play. I have the right to sing. I have the right to talk. I have the right to go to market. I have the right to speak up.
I shall raise my voice. 
If I didn't do it, who would?"

You can read her original diary for BBC Urdu here: Diary of a Pakistani Schoolgirl which recounts how the Taliban took over her homeland, the Swat valley, in 2009, forcing men to grow beards and targeting schools for girls.

A teacher from Holy Rosary College, Mountbellew, Eamonn Quinn and his students have written a beautiful song in tribute to the courageous campaigner.  The musical talent in this school is amazing and it really is a very special tribute to someone who was prepared to make huge sacrifices for the rights some of us take for granted. Listen to it here and share with your friends on Facebook or Twitter to show your support:

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