Zardari announces 10-mln dollar global 'Malala' war chest for girls' education
Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari has announced a 10 million-dollar donation for a global war chest to educate all girls by 2015 set up in the name of 15-year-old activist Malala Yousufzai, who was shot by the Taliban for campaigning for girls' education.
"A young determined daughter of my country was attacked by the forces of darkness. We are facing two forces in the country; Malala represents the forces of peace and we are fighting with the forces of darkness, hatred and violence," Zardari said at the high-profile "Stand Up For Malala" event at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris.
The "Malala Fund for Girls' Right to Education" aims at raising billions of dollars to ensure that all girls go to school by 2015 in line with United Nations Millennium goals, reports The Dawn.
Pakistan Education Minister Waqas Akram signed the agreement with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization head Irina Bokova.
The ceremony was attended by French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, former British premier Gordon Brown, the UN Special Envoy for Global Education, and the former presidents of Finland and Chile.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the EU's top diplomat Catherine Ashton send special videotaped messages of support.
Malala, who is recovering in a British hospital after being brutally attacked on her school bus on October 9, will herself join the campaign when she is better.
Ziauddin Yousufzai, Malala's father, a former teacher and headmaster has been appointed to help in what Brown has dubbed a new 'Malala Plan' to get all girls into school around the world by the end of 2015.
Brown said the initiative, which he hoped would attract "billions of dollars of public subscriptions", also aimed at stopping social evils such as child marriage and violence against girls.