Over 300 arrested in connection to Malala Yousafzai’s shooting.
A team of neurological specialists currently treating wounded Pakistani teen activist Malala Yousafzai say that her condition is stable, but “the next 36 to 48 hours are important.” Yousafzai, who was shot in the neck for defending girls' right to attend school, is currently on a ventilator. Military officials are reporting that Yousafzai also showed signs of movement in her limbs Saturday. Meanwhile, Pakistani officials have arrested more than 300 people in connection with Yousafzai’s shooting, but have only 35 of them in custody.
Don’t let the Taliban and other extremists win their war on women and girls.
The Taliban horrified the world by shooting a 14-year-old girl on a school bus—an attempt to end her dreams of getting an education. As the teenage girl, Malala Yousafzai, fights for her life, here’s what you can do to help girls like her around the world—girls who want to carve out their own future, not live a life of submission.
Pakistani school girls pray for the early recovery of child activist Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head in a Taliban assassination attempt, at their school in Peshawar on October 12, 2012. (A. Majeed / AFP / Getty Images)
• Go to Newsweek and The Daily Beast’s Women in the World Foundation to see how you can get involved with groups that help women and girls around the globe get educated and escape violent homes.
• Oxfam works on the ground in Pakistan specifically to end violence and discrimination against women and girls. The group recruits local Pakistani men and women to commit to being “change makers” who reform negative attitudes and behavior, and encourage others to do the same.
• At Women for Women International, you can sponsor a woman survivor of war for a year. For $30 a month, you’ll help her learn job skills and improve her life—and you can get to know her through exchanging personal letters.
The 14-year-old schoolgirl and activist stood up to the Taliban—and they gunned her down. Now, her shooting is uniting Pakistan in outrage. Will the attack prove to be the final tipping point against the Taliban?
Malala Yousafzai is still fighting for her life three days after the Taliban shot her—along with two female schoolmates—-at point-blank range. The 14-year old Pakistani activist, who campaigned for girls’ education, lies unconscious in an army hospital in Rawalpindi, surrounded by pediatric trauma experts. Her condition remains uncertain. Doctors say the next 48 hours could determine not only her ability to user her left arm and leg, but also the course of her potential recovery. CAT scans have also reportedly shown a possible brain injury.
Pakistani children pray for the early recovery of child activist Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head in a Taliban assassination attempt, next to her photograph as they pay tribute in Karachi on October 12, 2012. (Asif Hassan / AFP / Getty Images )
Meanwhile, outside her hospital room and across Pakistan, there is a sense of anger—and of déjà vu.
The brazen attack on the lovable teenager has shaken the country down to its core, sparking many rallies in her support. Meanwhile, in Pakistan’s electronic and print media, the outrage is aptly pouring out. Even religious talk show hosts are discussing how such a crime has nothing to do with Islam.
Suspects arrested in shooting of 14-year-old.
Pakistan called for a day of prayer on Friday in honor of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai, who is still fighting for her life after being shot in the head by the Taliban earlier this week. Yousafzai was transferred to an intensive-care unit at a military hospital in Rawalpindi, and doctors say her progress over the next few days is “critical.” The Taliban targeted Yousafzai for “promoting secularism” for her work advocating for better schooling and girls’ rights. On Tuesday, two armed men stopped a van packed with about a dozen schoolgirls and asked them which one was Yousafzai. When she identified herself, he fired three shots, hitting her in the head and injuring two others. Three suspects, aged 17 to 22, were arrested for their involvement with the shooting Friday.
The attack on the teenager is the latest reason the country has become paralyzed with fear of the Taliban’s medieval minds. Has the time finally come to stand up to the extremists?
We grieved as a nation when Benazir Bhutto was murdered. We grieved again when Salmaan Taseer, the governor of Punjab, was assassinated by his own guard. We wept when Shahbaz Bhatti, the first Christian federal minister in Pakistan, was brutally gunned down.
On July 6, Farida Afridi, a women’s-rights activist and cofounder of Sawera, was brutally murdered, shot by militants while on her way to work.
And, now we are a nation rent with the pain of a 14-year-old girl, attacked for daring to seek an education against the edict of terrorists.
In the wake of the shocking shooting of Malala Yousafzai, the entire world must take responsibility for ending the Taliban’s war against women—particularly the Taliban’s backers.
The targeted shooting of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai in Pakistan on Tuesday was another stark reminder of the Taliban’s defiance of the government and its efforts to push Pakistan into the dark ages. That women and girls are a special target is once again cynically displayed in the wretched words of the Taliban leadership celebrating their deed. The world has been asking, “What has happened in Pakistan?” for a long time. Now it is time for the world to take action.
The nation’s president, prime minister, and army chief all said the right things when Malala suffered potentially lethal wounds to her head and neck. The army took charge of her medical treatment in one of the few good facilities in Peshawar. A jet was put on standby in order to fly her abroad for treatment, were it needed. The interior minister declared that Malala has become an “icon for the country.”
If only that were true. Hundreds of girls’ schools have been destroyed without much of a concerted response from Pakistan’s officials. The intimidation of women and girls in the northern province is so complete that few venture out freely. Traditional Pashtun support for the education of daughters has been undermined by threats against their fathers. Not so long ago, even mullahs were increasingly sending their own girls to schools, segregated but still offering a chance of literacy.
The government that has decried this assassination attempt is the same government that began its career on the heels of the assassination of another female, its leader Benazir Bhutto. Both Bhutto and Yousafzai are symbols of the serious malaise afflicting Pakistan today. A country that could produce a female prime minister, but not protect her, is shown to be once again supportive of female education but unwilling and thus unable to keep in check the dark forces of Taliban terror pulling the country into a future where girls are ignorant, uneducated, and living as less than second-class citizens.
The Taliban shooting of 14-year-old schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai means it’s time for Pakistan to take responsibility for its extremism, writes Asra Nomani.
Last week, I was training the U.S. military on traditional Muslim culture, so soldiers know what to expect when they’re abroad. I mentioned a young girl fighting to change the future of Pakistan—she’s literally the ace of diamonds in a deck of cards I created to introduce students to personalities in the region. My ace: Malala Yousafzai, a girl in the Swat valley of Pakistan, battling the Taliban for the right for girls to go to school.
A demonstrator lights a candle during a rally against the assassination attempt of child activist Malala Yousafzai, in Karachi, Pakistan, Oct. 11, 2012. (Asif Hassan, AFP / Getty Images)
I posed this question to the class: would young Malala's spirit of enlightened Islamic interpretation prevail over the spades—the hardcore Pakistani militants and ideologues fueled by an extremist, dogmatic interpretation of Islam? I will admit I was hopeful. And then, this week, the very same 14-year-old girl was targeted by the forces of violence. She was shot in the head by members of the Pakistani Taliban, on a school bus. Her crime: pursuing an education for herself, and for others. The Taliban proudly defended their assault, with verses from the Quran.
The assassination attempt is disturbing beyond words, and deeply personal to me. I have relatives in Pakistan; the country has been inextricably woven into my life. I was born in India to a Muslim family, but many of my relatives moved to Pakistan after the nation was created in 1947 from the split of British India into two countries. My friend Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was murdered in Pakistan in 2002 when he was staying at a house I’d rented. I conceived a child in Pakistan while unmarried, making me a criminal according to that country’s religious laws. In the U.S., I put my son, now 9, on a school bus every morning, and I wonder how the secular dreams of Pakistan’s founder, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, have devolved into the targeted shooting of children on school buses.
Uncle says family is “very worried.”
The Pakistani teen activist who was shot by the Taliban is now in “critical” condition, her family said on Thursday. On Wednesday, doctors had said that 14-year-old Malala Yousufzai’s condition was “satisfactory,” but she is suffering from severe edema and doctors now plan to move her from the military hospital in Peshawar to one in Rawalpindi. Her uncle said that Yousufzai had not been conscious since she had surgery to remove the bullet more than 24 hours ago, adding that the family is “very worried.” After claiming responsibility for the shooting, the Taliban warned, “If she survives this time, she won’t next time. We will certainly kill her.”
Taliban claim credit for shooting 14-year-old girls’-rights activist.
Take that, Taliban. Surgeons in Pakistan said on Wednesday that they had successfully removed a bullet from a 14-year-old who had campaigned for women’s rights, while the Taliban claimed responsibility for the shooting. Malala Yousafzai and two other girls were injured as they left school in Pakistan’s Swat Valley on Tuesday, with militants saying they targeted her because she “promoted secularism.” Her family told the BBC that they had never thought about getting security because they did not think militants would target a young girl. Yousafzai gained international attention in 2009 when she published her diary about life under the Islamic militants.
Sami Yousafzai on the girl who refused to be scared into silence.
A courageously outspoken 14-year-old is fighting for her life in Pakistan tonight. Malala Yousafzai was shot in the head and the neck by unidentified gunmen on her way home from school today in Mingora, the largest city in the Swat Valley. The Pakistani Taliban quickly claimed responsibility for the attack. Ihsanullah Ihsan, a spokesman for the militants’ umbrella group, the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), told reporters in Peshawar that she was targeted for her anti-Taliban views. Two of her schoolmates were also injured in the attack.
Wounded Malala Yousafzai being transported to Peshawar, Pakistan, Oct. 9, 2012. (EPA-Landov)
Yousafzai (a common tribal name among the Pashtun, both in Swat and in my native Afghanistan) was airlifted from Mingora to Peshawar’s Combined Military Hospital. Bashir Bilour, the chief minister of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, spoke to reporters outside the hospital, denouncing the attacks as inhuman and un-Islamic. The girl’s condition seemed to be stable, he said, and she was responsive when doctors asked that she show her tongue and blink her eyes.
Nevertheless, he said, the next 10 days will be critical. After examining her thoroughly, the medical team informed the government that a bullet was lodged in her neck and was moving slowly toward her spinal cord. At this point swelling in her skull makes surgery impossible, the doctors say: the best chance of saving her life is to put her aboard an air ambulance and send her out of the country for expert treatment.
Malala Yousafzai campaigns for women’s rights.
A 14-year-old girl who has campaigned for women’s rights in Pakistan was shot on her way home from school in the country’s northwestern Swat region on Tuesday. Malala Yousafzai was nominated for an international peace award after she published her diary in 2009 about her life under the Taliban, who have since been ejected from the region. It’s unclear if Yousafzai was targeted in the attack. Initial reports said her injuries are not life-threatening.
In 2009, New York Times reporter Adam B. Ellick travelled to Swat Valley, Pakistan, to profile Malala Yousafzai on the day before the Taliban closed her school. Malala was shot last Tuesday, and is recovering.
I told my kids—and you should too: Girls’ education is under threat in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and around the world. It’s time we all took a stand. By Angelina Jolie. Plus: Here’s how you can help.
As millions mark Malala Day, we must take this opportunity to guarantee access to education for all young girls by 2015.
Abigail Pesta, editorial director of Women in the World, and Kim Azzarelli, President of Women in the World Foundation, discuss Angelina Jolie's moving column on the attempted murder of Malala Yousafzai, who was shot by the Taliban for promoting girls' education.
Nawaz Sharif, Pakistan’s former prime minister, once faced possible execution. Now he will return to the nation’s highest office. Bruce Riedel on the inside story of Sharif’s odyssey.
Malala Yousafzai, the teenage Pakistani activist who was shot last week by the Taliban and is now fighting for her life, has captivated the world with her heroic campaign for women's rights-but she isn't alone in her efforts. Documentarian Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy sat down with The Daily Beast to discuss the growing movement of women trying to 'change the narrative' in her country.