New York: Malala Yousafzai took over the United Nations on Friday, nine months
after a Taliban gunman put a bullet in her head believing he was ending
the Pakistani teenager's campaign for girls' education.
Here are the highlights of her address:
Malala Yousafzai is calling on us to invest in young people, in education, says UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon (introduces Malala Yousafzai)
Being here with such honourable people is a great moment in my life, it is an honour I am wearing a shawl of the late Benazir Bhutto
Thank you to every person who has prayed for my fast recovery and a new life
Cannot believe how much love people have shown me
Have received thousands of gifts from all over the world. Thank you to all of them. Thank you to the children whose innocent words.
Thank you to the elders whose prayers strengthened me.
Do remember one thing: Malala Day is not my day. It is the day of every woman, every boy and every girl who have raised their voice for their rights. There are hundreds of human rights activists who are struggling to achieve their goals of peace, education and equality
Thousands of people have been killed and injured by the terrorists. I am one of them. And today I speak not for myself but for those, whose voice cannot be heard
On the ninth of October 2012, the Taliban shot at me and my friends. They thought their bullets would silence us, but they failed. Out of the silence came thousands of voices. Hopelessness died and strength and courage was born.
I am the same Malala. My ambitions are the same. My hopes are the same and my dreams are the same. Dear sisters and brothers, I am not against anyone. Nor am I here to speak of personal revenge against Taliban. I am here to speak about the right to education of every child.
Want education for the Taliban's sons and daughters. This is the compassion I have learnt from Prophet Mohammed, Jesus Christ, Buddha, Martin Luther King Nelson Mandela and Mohammed Ali Jinnah.
This is what I have learnt from Mahatma Gandhi and Mother Teresa. This is what I have learnt from my father and my mother. This is what my soul is telling me - be peaceful and love others.
There is a saying that the pen is mightier than the sword. This is true. The extremists are afraid of books and pens. They are afraid of education. They are afraid of women. That is why they killed 14 innocent students recently. That is why killed female teachers in Pakhtunkhwa. They are afraid of change that equality would bring in our society.
Pakistan is a peace loving, democratic country and Islam is a religion of peace. It is the duty and responsibility to get education, that is what it says. Terrorism, wars and conflicts stop children from going to schools. Now we are tired of these wars. Women and children are suffering across the world.
In India, innocent children are victims of child labour. Many schools have been destroyed in Nigeria. People in Afghanistan are affected by decades of extremism. Women are subjected to domestic labour and child marriage.
There was a time when women asked men to stand up for their rights. This time, we will do it ourselves.
There was a time when women social activists asked men to stand up for their rights but this time we will stand up by ourselves. I am not saying men should step away, rather focusing on women to stay independent and stand up for themselves.
We call upon all governments to ensure free and compulsory education. We call upon all governments to fight against terrorism, to protect children.
We call upon all the communities to be tolerant, to reject prejudice based on caste, creed, sect, colour or gender. To ensure peace and equality for women. We cannot flourish if half of us is held back.
We want schools and education for every child's bright future and we will continue our journey to destination of peace and education. We will bring change through our voice. We believe in the strength and power of our words, they can change the whole world. Let us shield ourselves with unity and togetherness
Let us wage a global struggle against illiteracy. Let us pick up books and pens. One child one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world.