MEXICO CITY – A Pakistani Nobel Peace Prize laureate warned on Thursday during her first visit to Latin America that social network could be used to generate xenophobia and encouraged young people to use them for political causes instead.
During the press conference at Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education in Mexico City, Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani activist and philanthropist, urged young people to use social network on issues that they truly care about, such as equality, women’s rights and education.
The 20-year-old activist warned of the danger of discrimination on social network and the media.
Youzafzai said if online discrimination persists, people will start thinking that they need to hate Mexicans, Muslims or Catholics.
Thanks to technology, young people could now be more involved in the politics of their countries, according to Youzafzai.
When asked about the xenophobic remarks of US President Donald Trump which usually appear on his social media accounts, she said that his behaviors were wrong.
She said although people should follow their tradition, culture and nationality, they should not follow the hate because it hurts others.
Malala was also concerned about the situation of women in Latin America and called for equal right to education.
Youzafzai, who won the Nobel Peace Prize when she was 17, making her the youngest Nobel laureate to date, began her fight for equality at the age of 11 resisting the Taliban’s prohibition of local girls going to school.
She was also a blogger for the BBC under a pseudonym, which allowed her to tell the world how her country had been caught up in terror.
Youzafzai, who has recently got accepted into Oxford University, said that there were countless benefits a country could receive if it educated children.
She also expressed her concerns about the refugees from Latin American countries who have been displaced along the borders of Mexico and the US.
Although Youzafzai praised the works and efforts of President Enrique Peña Nieto, whom she met earlier in the day at the presidential palace, she concluded that there was still a long way to go for Mexico regarding the issue.
Malala Youzafzai said she looks up to the likes of Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., and other world leaders who fight for equality.