Malala Yousafzai: Pakistani girl shot by Taliban is discharged from hospital

 

With a shy smile, a wave and a hug for the nurses who helped save her life, Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai left hospital in Britain today.

The 15-year-old, who was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman after campaigning for women’s rights to education in her native country, is said to have made an excellent recovery following the point blank assassination attempt but now faces months of recuperation and further reconstructive surgery on her skull.

Her father Ziauddin said his daughter was well on the road to recovery. “She is quite well and happy on returning home — as we all are,” he said,

The teenager has become a powerful symbol in the fight for universal female schooling in Pakistan. She was seriously injured in the attack in October whilst travelling on a bus back from school in the Swat Valley in the north of the country where militants accused her of promoting “Western thinking”. But walking unaided on Thursday, she was discharged by doctors who paid tribute to her strength and bravery.

Medical director Dr Dave Rosser at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital where she has received treatment said the youngster would benefit from being with her parents Ziauddin and Toorpekai and brothers Khushal and Atul at their temporary home in the West Midlands.

“Malala is a strong young woman and has worked hard with the people caring for her to make excellent progress in her recovery,” he said.

Her case has been highlighted by celebrities including Madonna and Angelina Jolie who called for her to be awarded the Nobel peace prize. Candlelit vigils have been held across the world as well as in Birmingham where she was brought for treatment six days after the shooting.

Malala underwent an operation to remove the bullet from her skull in Pakistan but was then airlifted to the UK where she has been under the care of specialist neurosurgeons.

The bullet entered her skull, grazing her brain.  Hospital officials would not confirm whether she was currently being schooled but confirmed she was able to read and write in both Urdu and English.

Before she is readmitted next month she will live. She will then continue her treatment as a weekly outpatient and is now expected to stay in Britain permanently.

There has been heightened security at the hospital following threats by militants. Malala has been taking home leave since before Christmas. Last month she was visited by Pakistan’s president Asif Ali Zardari whose government has promised to pay for all her treatment.

Her father, who ran a private school, has been appointed education attache for three years at the Pakistani consulate in Birmingham with the option of an extension for a further two years. “I thank the whole of Pakistan and all other well-wishers for praying for her and our family,” said Mr Yousafzai. “What I am doing here is all temporary, and God willing we all will return to our homeland,” he added.

In Malala’s hometown of Mingora, there were no public celebration but cousins handed out sweets to neighbours after hearing the news from Birmingham.  “Obviously we all are jubilant over her rapid recovery, and we hope that she will soon fully recover and would return back to her home town at an appropriate time,” said Mahmoodul Hasan who runs a private school. But there are still fears for her safety. “I would say the real happy day will be when we all get confidence that there would be no threat of attack on any Malala of the country in the future,” said Azizul Hasan

Last month several hundred students in Mingora protested against plans to have their school named after Malala, fearing it would make the institution a target for the Taliban.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Sport
Ray Whelan was arrested earlier this week
Arts and Entertainment
In a minor key: Keira Knightley in the lightweight 'Begin Again'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Celebrated children’s author Allan Ahlberg, best known for Each Peach Pear Plum
books
News
peopleIndian actress known as the 'Grand Old Lady of Bollywood' was 102
News
Wayne’s estate faces a claim for alleged copyright breaches
peopleJohn Wayne's heirs duke it out with university over use of the late film star's nickname
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Business Systems Analyst (Retail)

£30000 - £35000 Per Annum Up to 20% bonus: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: An...

Technical BA - Banking - Bristol - £400pd

£400 per hour: Orgtel: Technical Business Analyst - Banking - Bristol - £400pd...

Head of Digital Marketing,London

To £58k Contract 12 months: Charter Selection: Major household name charity se...

Lead Hand - QC

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Lead Hand - QCProgressive are recruiting...

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice