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Girl, 14, Shot By Taliban For Standing Up For Education

Wed, October 10, 2012 11:22am EDT by 4 Comments
Malala Yousafzai shot Taliban

A Pakistani girl was shot in the head and seriously wounded on Oct. 9 by the Taliban as she was leaving school. The 14-year-old activist is well-known for her efforts to promote the schooling of young girls in the Middle East, and the Taliban promises to target her again if she survives.

Malala Yousafzai, a well-known equality activist in Swat, Pakistan, was shot in the head by the Taliban on a school bus filled with fellow classmates on Oct. 9. The 14-year-old girl was targeted because of her efforts to promote education for girls.

Malala was sitting on the bus ready to leave school when an armed man with a beard charged the school bus and asked which girl was Malala. When a nearby girl pointed her out, the gunman opened fire on both Malala and another girls on the bus.

The activist, Pakistani National Youth Peace Prize suffered injuries to her head and neck, but surgeons successfully removed the bullets on Oct. 9, although she remains unconscious. The other girl is in stable condition.

The Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) have taken responsibility for the shootings, and a spokesman told a Pakastani newspaper she was targeted because she is a “secular-minded lady” and this incident should be a warning for other young people like her.

They’ve also promised to come after her again if she survives for her “pro-West” beliefs, and for idolizing Barack Obama.

“In attacking Malala, the terrorists have failed to grasp that she is not only an individual, but an icon of courage and hope who vindicates the great sacrifices that the people of Swat and the nation gave, for wresting the valley from the scourge of terrorism,” Pakistan’s top military officer General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani said in response the attacks.

Malala is well-respected in Swat Valley for her political efforts, and even won the Pakistani National Youth Peace Prize in 2011. Swat Valley schools closed on Oct. 9 in protest of the attacks, and military officers stood guard at Malala’s home to protect her family from the Taliban.

What a courageous young woman. We applaud Malala for standing up for her beliefs, and we are keeping her and her family in our thoughts.

What do YOU think of the attack on Malala HollyMoms?

— Christina Stiehl

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