FEMALE empowerment was on the agenda when an author visited North-East schoolgirls.

Sufiya Ahmed, who has published Secrets of the Henna Girl, her first novel for teenagers, visited Durham High School for Girls.

The Indian-born writer, who grew up in Bolton, tackles important issues in the Muslim community, such as forced marriage and family honour, in the book.

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Pupils at the school recently held an International Day in which they focused on the story of Malala Yousuizai.

She made headlines around the world when she survived being shot in the head by the Taliban in her native Pakistan for campaigning for the right of girls to receive education.

Ms Ahmed talked about her novel and the issues it raised.