Malala makes first trip to Pakistan home since Taliban attack

RSTV Bureau
File photo of Malala Yousafzai. AP/PTI

File photo of Malala Yousafzai.
AP/PTI

Nobel Laureate and young human rights activist Malala Yousafzai returned to her home in Pakistan on Thursday, six years after she was airlifted to Britain after being shot in the head by the Taliban militants in 2012. Speaking at her arrival she said of dreaming about returning home every day for the last five years.

Hours after her arrival in Islamabad, the famed human rights activist met Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at his office here along with some other officials.

“I have dreamed of returning to Pakistan for the past five years,” 20-year-old Malala said with tears in her eyes.

“Whether I was in a plane or driving in a car in streets of London, I dreamed of being in Islamabad and Karachi but it was not true. But finally I am here and very happy,” she said.

Malala said that she was working on the education of children and wants empowerment of women in Pakistan. “Today, I am very happy that, after five-and-a-half years, I have set foot on the soil of my nation again,” she said in Urdu.

Malala left Pakistan after she was shot in the head by the Taliban militants in 2012 for campaigning for female education in Swat Valley. The young activist not only survived the bullet wound in her head but won the Noble Peace prize in 2014.

Pakistan Prime Minister Abbasi in a warm welcome address said he was happy that a daughter of the nation has come to her motherland. “It is your home. Now you are not an ordinary citizen, your security is our responsibility,” he said.

He said the entire world gave honour and respect to Malala and Pakistan would also give her the kind of respect she deserves.

“Pakistan welcomes ‘Gul Makai’ to her home. We are proud of you. #malalacomeshome,” Foreign Office spokesperson Muhammad Faisal tweeted earlier today.

(With inputs from Agencies)