Malala Yousafzai on emotional return to Pakistan

30 March, 2018, 00:29 | Author: Diane Mills
  • Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala returns home after over 5 yrs

She remained in the country after undergoing medical treatment there and started studying at the University of Oxford a year ago.

Humeira Shawkat, another woman attorney in Swat, says she does not think Malala deserves any credit.

"I know that millions of girls around the world are out of school and may never get the opportunity to complete their education", Malala wrote at the time. She said she "did not realise how handsome Swat was" until she moved to the UK.

She was later honoured by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at a special ceremony at his residence.

She landed at Islamabad's global airport named after a daughter of Pakistan who was educated at Oxford University and aspired to keep the ravages of extremism at bay. Local television showed her with family members in the lounge at the airport before leaving in a convoy of almost 15 vehicles, mostly occupied by heavily armed police officials.

Many Pakistanis were delighted by her return, expressing their delight on Twitter.

Cricketer turned opposition leader Imran Khan's party said Yousafzai's return was a sign of the defeat of extremism in the country.

Prime Minister Abbasi, referring to Yousafzai, said he was "so happy that our child who has earned so much fame internationally has come home". He said he was not sure whether Yousafzai will visit her home town, where schoolchildren were jubilant on her return, though they wished Yousafzai had visited Mingora so that they could greet her.

Reportedly, the prime minister's office has organized an event to welcome her. She took a deep breath, wiped the tears and resumed speaking.

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"For many other Pakistanis, though, Malala is a source of great pride, and now she's finally come home".

"One positive aspect of Malala's image is that now mostly people are welcoming her".

The Pakistani Taliban, who seized control of her hometown in Pakistan's Swat Valley before being pushed out by the army in 2009, later claimed the attack in response to her blog for the BBC Urdu service advocating girls' education. He also referred to the militants who wounded Yousafzai and the battle Pakistan is still fighting.

Ms Yousafzai was flown, in a critical condition, to the garrison city of Rawalpindi before being airlifted to Birmingham in the UK. And funding has gone toward repairing classrooms and purchasing books, uniforms, and supplies for girls' schools, such as those damaged by flooding in Punjab.

In 2014, Malala became the youngest recipient of Nobel Peace Prize at the age of 17, in recognition of her efforts for children's rights.

She remained in Britain after undergoing medical treatment there and won a place at the University of Oxford past year.

"Some Pakistanis have always been critics of Malala, favouring conspiracy theories claiming she is "a Western agent" or was actually shot by the CIA", Kermani says.

As an 11-year-old, Yousufzai started an anonymous diary describing a girl's thirst for education.

"Whether I was in a plane or driving in a vehicle in streets of London, I dreamed of being in Islamabad and Karachi but it was not true".

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