Malala returns to Pakistan home town for first time since attack

Pakistan       by Sarfraz Ali | Published

Pakistan by Sarfraz Ali | Published

She was shot by Taliban terrorists in 2012 when she was returning from school in Swat region of the country.

Yousafzai has won praise from across Pakistan on her return home, but some critics on social media have tried to undermine her efforts to promote girls' education.

Pakistani activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai (C) emerges from a helicopter upon her arrival at the all-boys Swat Cadet College Guli Bagh, some 15 kilometers outside of her hometown of Mingora, March 31, 2018. She said she plans to permanently return to Pakistan after completing her studies in Britain. He miraculously survived attack and over time has become a global symbol of fight against extremism and right of women to education, which earned him Nobel Peace Prize in 2014, along with Indian Kailash Satyarthi.

Nobel Peace Prize victor Malala Yousafzai returned to her hometown of Mingora in Pakistan yesterday for the first time since being shot in the head there in 2012.

Malala was accompanied by State Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, her family and others as she travelled by an army helicopter from Islamabad to Swat, Geo News reported.

Among the most recent terror attacks in Swat, at least 11 soldiers were killed in a suicide attack on a security check post in Mingora, Swat during February this year.

Youzafsai later returned to Islamabad, where she met with human rights activists. "Islam has taught me the importance of peace".

Swat was known to be the place of beheading, public lynching and punishments to what they called "infidels".

"We welcome Malala and the slogan that she has raised - one pen, one teacher".

"What I want is for people to support my goal of education and think about the daughters of Pakistan who need an education", she told Pakistan's The News in comments published on Saturday.

Yousafzai also attended a gathering at the army's Cadet College in Swat.

Although she has gained worldwide acclaim and recognition, Ms. Yousafzai is still viewed by many in Pakistan's conservative society in a critical light, and some portray her as a Western stooge.

"I left Swat with my eyes closed and now I am back with my eyes open", she told AFP, referring to how she was airlifted out in a coma after the attack in 2012. She was targeted for speaking out on education for young women.

Though she is perhaps the world's best-known Pakistani, Yousafzai - known nearly universally as just "Malala" - is polarizing figure at home, beloved by many but reviled by others.

However she has also been met with pockets of intense criticism.

Ms Yousafzai was guarded by the Pakistani military during her visit. And it declared November 10 Malala Day - a day of action to focus on "Malala and the 32 million girls like Malala not at school". I have the same right on the country as any another Pakistani, she said.

"What I want is for people to support my objective of education and think about the daughters of Pakistan who need an education", she told the newspaper.

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