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S Asia Malala Yousafzai 'Is Everybody's Daughter', Says Father

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by findingmyway, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. findingmyway

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    Aug 18, 2010
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    Ziauddin Yousafzai says daughter shot by Taliban for daring to want to go to school has provided a turning point for Pakistan

    She has been adopted as an emblem of peace in a region beset by violence and has provided a voice of quiet protest in a sea of angry rhetoric. Now Malala Yousafzai, the 15-year-old who was shot in the head by the Taliban for daring to want to go to school, could provide a turning point in Pakistan's history, according to her father.

    Ziauddin Yousafzai, speaking after arriving in Britain to visit Malala with his wife and two sons, said his daughter would not be beaten by the Taliban but would "rise again".

    Clearly moved by the support his family and daughter have received, he said the attack, in which Malala was shot by a Pakistan Taliban gunman while making her way home on a school bus, had united his nation in approbation.

    "When she fell, Pakistan stood and the world rose," Yousafzai told a press conference in Birmingham, where his daughter is being treated after being flown to the UK from Pakistan. "This is a turning point. In Pakistan, for the first time, all political parties, Urdus, Christians, Sikhs, all religions prayed for my daughter." He added: "She is not just my daughter, she is everybody's daughter."

    He thanked all those who supported her cause of "peace and education" (video) and condemned the violence that had been inflicted upon her.
    "An attacker, who could be called the agent of Satan, he attacked," he said. "But after that I found angels on my side, everywhere, all around me, until this time and this place […] I'm thankful to all the people all over the world. They condemned the attack and prayed for my daughter."

    Malala had gained global influence and respect since starting a blog documenting her desire to get an education in her home city of Mingora in the Swat Valley. She wrote compellingly for the BBC about the daily struggles of getting an education in a region where the Taliban has occasionally banned girls from attending school. Gradually she became a more public figure, promoting education for girls in interviews and advising local authorities on education.

    But her own schooling was violently interrupted on 9 October: she was shot at point blank range and two other girls were injured in the attack which the Taliban said was punishment for "promoting secularism".
    The bullet hit her just above the back of her left eye and came within inches of killing her. But as her father put it: "When she fell, the person who attacked her wanted to kill her … She fell temporarily, she will rise again, she will stand again. She can stand now."

    Immediately after the attack surgeons in Pakistan battled to save the teenager's life, performing an emergency operation to remove a bullet lodged in her neck. But with the threat of further retribution hanging over the family, the decision was taken to airlift Malala to Britain, where it was hoped she could recover in peace.

    Her father spoke of the joy of seeing his daughter alive again when they were reunited this week at the Queen Elizabeth hospital in Birmingham.
    The reunion was particularly emotional, he explained, because the family had started to mentally prepare themselves for her funeral. "A time came … when, God forbid, I told my brother that you should make preparations for her funeral," he said. "To be very short, I can say that she got the right treatment, at the right place, at the right time." He added: "I love her. Last night when we met her there were tears in our eyes out of happiness. For some time we all cried a bit."

    Yousafzai paid special tribute to Dr David Rosser, who is treating Malala, and thanked him for keeping the lines of communication between the UK and Pakistan open since Malala was transferred.
    Rosser said Malala was continuing to make good progress and was now able to eat, talk and walk with only a little help. He added that her short and long-term memory seemed to be fine. "We're very much in a phase of her care that is about her recovery, both physical and psychological," he said. "She's very tired but she managed a big smile for her mum and dad and her brothers."

    Since the attack Malala has been nominated for the International Children's peace prize by Desmond Tutu and has won Pakistan's first National Youth peace prize. Despite promises from the Taliban to kill Malala if she goes back to Pakistan, Yousafzai insisted the family would return home: Malala has already started preparing for her exams.

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