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Ear to the Ground

Leave Malala Alone Already, Taliban

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Posted on Oct 7, 2013
United Nations Information Centres (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The Taliban have said they’ll target Malala again “whenever [they] have a chance.”

Remember Malala Yousafzai, the valiant girl who was attacked by terrorists in Pakistan last year for her education campaigns? Well, apparently, the Pakistani Taliban are quite relentless and have recently vocalized their desires to attack the schoolgirl yet again. After its failed attempt to kill her on a school bus, Yousafzai recovered and has been living in Britain. Al-Jazeera English reports:

The Taliban says the attack on Malala was because of her anti-Islam remarks and not her pursuit of education, “She even used a fake name of Gul Makai to write a diary. We attacked Malala because she was used to speak against Taliban and Islam and not because she was going to school,” [Shahidullah Shaid, spokesman for the main Tehreek-e-Taliban, Pakistan’s umbrella group] said.

Malala is not a stranger to such threats having first rose to prominence during the Taliban’s 2007-2009 rule in Pakistan’s northwestern Swat Valley with a blog for the BBC Urdu service chronicling the struggle of daily life under Taliban rule.

Her publicised criticism of the Taliban and its violent action against girls’ schools meant she was soon targeted by the group…[After she] survived the attack [she] became a global ambassador for the right of all children, girls as well as boys, to go to school.

Having spread a message of “education for all” across the globe, the 16-year-old is now among the favourites for the Nobel Peace Prize, which will be awarded on Friday.

She recently was given the RAW in WAR Anna Politkovskaya Award, named after the Russian journalist who was shot dead seven years ago. The award promotes women who have defended human rights.

Despite the international recognition she’s received for her fearless activism (or perhaps because of it) the Taliban have stated she is “not a brave girl and has no courage.” In a recent interview with the BBC, Yousafzai expressed her desire to return to Pakistan no matter what the Taliban plotted against her. Sounds like they can’t quite grasp the definition of courage, but Yousafzai sure does.

—Posted by Natasha Hakimi


To read more about Malala Yousafzai, one of our Truthdiggers of the Week, click here.

 

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