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Malala Yousafzai is Honored with Nobel Peace Prize

The Nobel committee announced that this year’s Nobel Peace Prize is awarded to Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai “for their struggle against oppression of young people and children," CNN reported

“Children must go to school, not be financially exploited,” Thorbjorn Jagland, chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, said in his announcement Friday morning. With 60 percent of the world’s population under 25 years of age, these issues are vital for the wellbeing of our global community.

Malala Yousafzai “has shown by example that children and young people can contribute to improving their own situations,” Jagland continued. At 17, Malala is the youngest ever peace prize winner. She began her activism at age 11, writing a blog for the BBC detailing her life under Taliban occupation. At 15, she was shot in the head at point-blank range while taking the bus home from school. She miraculously recovered, and continued fighting for girls’ education worldwide. She started her organization, the Malala Fund, to empower girls to raise their voices and demand change.

According to USA Today, Malala was in chemistry class when she found out about the award, and waited until after school to make her statement. "We should all consider each other as human beings and we should respect each other," she said. "It is my message to children all around the world that they should stand up for their rights."

Learn more about the inspiring activist's life in the slideshow above.