Five young women, including two former classmates from Pakistan, will join Malala Yousafzai in Oslo on December 10, as the education activist receives her Nobel Peace Prize, her organization announced today.
“This Nobel Peace Prize is for all girls everywhere who want an education," Malala said in a statement. "These courageous girls are not just my friends, they are now my sisters in our campaign for education for every child.”
Yousafzai, the youngest-ever Peace Prize recipient, will be joined by friends and former classmates Shazia Ramzan, 16, and Kainat Riaz, 17, both of whom were also shot in the October 2012 Taliban attack that nearly killed the teen campaigner.
Ramzan and Riaz both recovered over time, and returned to their school in Pakistan's Swat Valley soon after, though with armed guards and under lingering threats from the Taliban. As Yousafzai continued her education in England, her friends and fellow survivors remained a source of constant support in her home country.
Joining Yousafzai will be three other young, female activists: Kainat Soomro -- a young Pakistani woman fighting for justice years after a sexual assault, Mazon Almellehan -- a 16-year-old Syrian refugee and education advocate, and Amina Yusuf, a 17-year old from northern Nigeria who mentors young girls.
Yousafzai's eponymous organization - The Malala Fund - works in Syrian refugee communities and Nigeria, as well as five other countries, with a goal to educating children worldwide.