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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 20 February 2019

Peshawar massacre survivor awarded for anti-extremism work

Ahmad Nawaz has travelled the UK encouraging communities to pull together to fight terrorism

Ahmad Nawaz speaks at an event to commemorate the Peshawar massacre in Birmingham on December 14, 2015. AFP.
Ahmad Nawaz speaks at an event to commemorate the Peshawar massacre in Birmingham on December 14, 2015. AFP.

A Pakistani youth activist who survived the brutal 2014 attack on Peshawar that killed 132 schoolchildren is to be given a UK award recognising his “outstanding” anti-radicalisation work.

Ahmad Nawaz has spoken to thousands of UK students where he has urged local communities to collectively tackle extremism. He is currently working with the UK’s home office and will become only the third Pakistani to receive a Point of Light distinction.

In a letter commending Mr Nawaz’s work, prime minister Theresa May said: “The work that you do to educate young people about extremism and radicalisation is invaluable – and the fact that it comes from your own experience is testament to your incredible personal strength and resolve.”

He was recently appointed to the board of a UK counter-extremism board.

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“I am deeply honoured to be recognised as a ‘Point of Light’ by the Prime Minister. It has propelled me to do more of the positive work that I do for the society. I would like to encourage other young people to do the same in order to have a society free of extremism and violence,” said Mr Nawaz.

In December 2014 six Taliban gunmen, all foreigners, stormed an Army public school in Peshawar killing 149 including 132 children.

The Points of Lights are daily awards that recognise volunteers who make a difference to their community and “whose story can inspire others to creative innovative solutions to social challenge.”

It originally began in the US under president George H.W Bush and today more than 6,000 US Points of Lights awards have been given.

Updated: January 18, 2019 02:54 PM

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