Malala ties the knot in intimate ceremony
24-year-old female education activist and the world’s youngest Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Malala Yousafzai, has tied the knot in a small ceremony in Birmingham. The Pakistani human rights advocate and Oxford graduate, often referred to by just her first name, announced the marriage on social media on Tuesday.
Posting several photos of her and her new husband, cricket official Asser Malik, Yousafzai wrote, “Today marks a precious day in my life. Asser and I tied the knot to be partners for life.
“We celebrated a small nikkah ceremony at home in Birmingham with our families. Please send us your prayers. We are excited to walk together for the journey ahead.”
Today marks a precious day in my life.
Asser and I tied the knot to be partners for life. We celebrated a small nikkah ceremony at home in Birmingham with our families. Please send us your prayers. We are excited to walk together for the journey ahead.
— Malala (@Malala) November 9, 2021
A nikkah ceremony is the Muslim marriage ceremony, during which the marriage contract is sign and the bride and groom say ‘I do’. One of the photos shared to Twitter shows the couple signing what is presumably their marriage contract, while being supervised by a religious official. They are seated in front of a wall of white flowers, with the occasional pink rose making an appearance. Another photo shows the couple with Yousafzai’s parents in front of that same wall.
Yousafzai has previously questioned the need for marriage, asking in a Vogue interview in July of this year, "If you want to have a person in your life, why do you have to sign marriage papers? Why can't it just be a partnership?"
Yousafzai made headlines around the world in 2012, when, at the age of 15, an attempt was made on her life by members of the Taliban in an act of retaliation for her advocacy for women’s education. She was hit in the head with a bullet and rendered unconscious, but her condition eventually improved enough for her to be transferred to a hospital in Birmingham, where she has been based since.
In June of last year, Yousafzai revealed she had passed her final examinations and completed her Philosophy, Politics, and Economics degree at Lady Margaret Hall, the University of Oxford. Benazir Bhutto, who Yousafzai has previously cited as an inspiration, also attended the college.
Little is known about Yousafzai’s husband, Asser Malik, except that he works for the Pakistan Cricket Board.
Many celebrities wished the couple well on social media, including Greta Thunberg, who met with Yousafzai at Oxford last year, and Reese Witherspoon, who wrote, “Congratulations on this wonderful moment! 💫❤️”.