BIRMINGHAM: Malala Yousafzai says she is heartbroken by Donald Trump’s decision to ban refugees from seven Muslim-majority nations from entering the US. Malala, who is the youngest ever Nobel Peace Prize winner, condemned the President’s decision to sign an executive banning immigrants with the purported intent of “keeping radical terrorists out” of the United States. The Pakistani-born education campaigner has lived in Birmingham since 2012 when she was treated at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital after the Taliban tried to assassinate her. Malala, who has previously described herself as a “‘proud Brummie,” founded the Malala Fund and won the Nobel Peace Prize at the age of 17. With protests growing around the world about the president’s decision, she issued a statement. It said: “I am heartbroken that today President Trump is closing the door on children, mothers and fathers fleeing violence and war. “I am heartbroken that Syrian refugee children, who have suffered through six years of war by no fault of their own, are singled-out for discrimination. “I am heartbroken that America is turning its back on a proud history of welcoming refugees and immigrants – the people who helped build your country, ready to work hard in exchange for a fair chance at a new life.” Malala goes on to tell the story of a friend named Zaynab who fled wars in Somalia, Yemen and Egypt before travelling to the United States as a teen.
Malala wrote, Zaynab is in college studying to be a human rights lawyer, but hopes to one day be reunited with a younger sister from whom she was separated in Egypt. “Today her hope of being reunited with her precious sister dims.” The message, which was released by the Malala Fund, her charity focusing on girls’ education added: “In this time of uncertainty and unrest around the world I ask President Trump not to turn his back on the world’s most defenceless children and families.” Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban after campaigning for the rights of girls to attend school in the Swat Valley region of Pakistan, where the militant Islamist group had influence. The attack followed her campaign for girls to have the same right to an education as boys. She went through a five-hour operation to reconstruct her skull at the QE Hospital and since then she has lived in the city and previously studied at Edgbaston High School. In 2014 she became the youngest ever recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, at the age of 17. She was a joint winner along with Indian children’s rights activist Kailash Satyarthi. In 2015, she opened a school in Lebanon for Syrian refugee girls. Meanwhile Stratford upon Avon Conservation MP Nadhim Zahawi said he was saddened to learn that Donald Trump’s new immigration order will mean that he and his wife will be banned from travelling to the US.