By now, most of us have heard the story of the Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by the extremist group Boko Haram in mid-April. As outrage and demands for action have spread across the globe, Malala Yousafzai, advocate for girls’ education and author of our 2014-15 Go Big Read book, sat down with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour for an interview.
“I thought that ‘my sisters are in prison now,'” Malala says, explaining her first thoughts on hearing about the abduction. “And I felt as if I should speak up for them, because I have a responsibility. I believe that we are sent to this earth as a community, and it’s our responsibility to take care of each other. The girls in Nigeria are my sisters, and it’s my responsibility that I speak up for my sisters.”
She added that Boko Haram “don’t really understand Islam…they are actually abusing the name of Islam, because they have forgotten that the word ‘Islam’ means peace. […] They are actually afraid of the power of women. They don’t want women to get empowered, to get education, and they don’t want women to achieve their goals. So I think these terrorists are afraid of women, and that’s why they are kidnapping women.”
You can watch the full interview here.