This is what Malala Yousafzai, the world’s youngest Nobel laureate, has been up to
Last November, human rights activist Malala Yousafzai announced to the world her marriage to the Pakistani cricket businessman Asser Malik. What has been the life of the youngest Nobel Prize winner since then? Where's Malala now?
Despite being a newlywed, Malala kept her social and professional responsibilities expected from such an important personality. Here she can be seen attending a social function for The Malala Fund in London, days later after her wedding.
The young activist also participated in the Doha Forum in Qatar in March 2022 where she spoke about the importance of female education.
Al Jazeera describes The Doha Forum as “the biggest global platform that brings together policy leaders to discuss critical challenges facing the world, promote the interchange of ideas, and action-oriented recommendations”.
Also in March 2022, Malala addressed the controversy over Muslim women's choice to wear a burka.
“Whether a woman chooses a burka or a bikini, she has the right to decide for herself. Come and talk to us about individual freedom and autonomy, about preventing harm and violence, about education and emancipation”, Yousafzai wrote in an essay.
Nonetheless, the young activist still finds free time to enjoy her life. Here she is with her friend, Pakistani filmmaker Sarah Jehaan Khan in March 2022.
And here's she in April with Zimbabwean education activist Kativhu.
Malala announced her married to Asser Malik on November 10, 2021. The young activist wrote on social media that this moment “marks a precious day in my life.”
Asser Malik is a Pakistani businessman who serves as the High-Performance general manager of the Pakistan Cricket Board. Yousafzai has expressed many times her love for the game.
It's been quite a journey for Malala Yousafzai in such a short time. After all, the advocate for the rights of women and youth earned her the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014, at age 17.
Malala Yousafzai was born in Mingora, a city in the northwestern Pakistani province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. At age 12, she began writing a blog about her life in a region occupied by the Taliban for the BBC.
Pictured: Malala Yousafzai at age 12, in 2009.
Soon she garnered attention worldwide, though not always positive. Malala suffered an assassination attempt in 2012, when she was 15. The attack, perpetrated by members of an extremist Muslim group, was roundly condemned around the world. Yousafzai had to go through extensive reconstructive surgery.
2013 was an important year for the young activist. She spoke at the United Nations, had a private audience with Queen Elizabeth, and met with US President Barack Obama and his family. Malala criticized the Obama administration's approval of drone strikes in Pakistan.
Malala became the youngest recipient of the Nobel Prize in 2014, at age 17. She shared the award with Indian social reformer Kailash Satyarthi. The committee declared that they picked an Indian and a Muslim winner to portray “a common struggle for education and against extremism.”
The young activist launched in 2013 the non-profit organization The Malala Fund. This foundation, which aims to educate and empower girls in developing countries, carries Malala's work while she can focus on other matters.
Yousafzai is well-known for regarding education as a top priority. From 2013 to 2017 she was a pupil at the all-girl Edgbaston High School in Birmingham, England. She has been focusing much more on her future and her education these past years.
After Edgbaston, Malala was accepted into Lady Margaret Hall College at the University of Oxford. She graduated with a degree in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics with the highest honors in June 2020.
However, it was only in November 2021 that the young activist actually got her degree from Oxford.
Pictured: Malala and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in late 2021.
Malala continued to do some interviews and public appearances along with her studies. On her 18th birthday, in 2015, she opened a school for Syrian refugees in Lebanon and called world leaders to invest in “books, not bullets.”
(Photo: United Nations)
Malala became a United Nations Ambassador for Peace in April 2017, the youngest person to have that honor.
(Photo: United Nations)
She was also in Afghanistan in 2021 during the retreat of US troops and joined other activists to demand that the Taliban respect the rights of women and girls.
(Photo: United Nations)
However, Yousafzai also has a lively personal life and can be seen in some social events. Pictured here is Malala attending a private party organized by British Vogue in September 2021 to celebrate fashion in film.
She was also part of the ICC Cricket World Cup opening party in London in 2019. Cricket is probably the most popular sport in Pakistan.
Malala has mentioned her wish to return to Pakistan “without any fear”. “I am proud of my religion, and I am proud of my country,” she declared in a statement picked by The Daily Telegraph. Hopefully, that day will arrive sooner than later for the young activist.