‘Real life’

Malala Yousafzai, youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize winner, says Trump needs to visit refugee children

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan speaks during a ceremony at the UN headquarters in New York on April 10, 2017. Yousafzai was designated as UN Messenger of Peace with a special focus on girls education. (JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

In a television interview held in the General Assembly Hall of the United Nations, 19-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani education activist who was recently honored as a U.N. Messenger of Peace, suggested that Donald Trump “needs to go and visit the refugee camps” in order to understand what “real life is like” there.

Yousafzai, the daughter of an anti-Taliban activist, first came into global view in 2008 after the then 11-year-old gave a speech in Peshawar denouncing Taliban attacks on girls’ schools. In early 2009, she began blogging about attacks on women’s education for the BBC under the pseudonym Gul Makai. Retaliation for her activism came when Yousafzai was only 15. A masked gunman boarded her schoolbus, asked her classmates to identify her, and then shot her in the head.

After receiving treatment at a Peshawar military hospital, Malala was flown to the UK where she underwent multiple surgeries. After her recovery, she began attending school in Birmingham, England while continuing her advocacy for education. A few years later, at age 17, she became the youngest person ever to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

Speaking at the UN, Yousafzai told CBS This Morning co-host Norah O’Donnell that it was “important that [Mr. Trump] understand that these [refugees] are in need.”

“If you don’t open the doors, if you don’t welcome them, they will be killed,” said Yousafzai. “I have seen them. I have went to refugee camps. And I think he needs to go to these refugee camps … President Donald Trump needs to go and see refugee children.”

Over the past few years, Yousafzai has launched a campaign to help educate children displaced by the Syrian civil war, and opened a school for Syrian refugees in Lebanon. Yousafzai, whose past two birthdays have been spent at refugee camps, had previously criticized then-presidential candidate’s Donald Trump’s pledge to ban Muslims from entering the country as “tragic,” arguing that such a policy would not “stop terrorism” but, rather, “radicalize more terrorists.”

Watch the interview below.


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