Girl shot by Taliban to undergo final surgery
LONDON (AP) – A Pakistani girl whose defiance of the Taleban turned her into an international icon is headed toward recovery once she undergoes a final surgery to reconstruct her skull, doctors said Wednesday.
Dr Dave Rosser of Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital said that 15-year-old Malala Yousufzai needs the operation to replace the bone shattered when a Taleban gunman, angered at her objection to the group’s restrictions on girls’ education, sent a bullet through her skull. Rosser said that Malala had made a “remarkable recovery.”
“She’s very lively, she’s got a great sense of humour,” Rosser told journalists at the hospital. “She’s not naive at all about what happened to her and the situation she’s looking forward to in terms of being a high-profile person, and potentially a high-profile target. She’s not naive to any of that, but she remains incredibly determined, incredibly cheerful and incredibly determined to speak for her cause.”
That cause has turned Malala into a symbol for a girl’s right to an education.
At the age of 11, she began writing a blog under a pseudonym for the BBC about life under the Taleban in Pakistan’s picturesque Swat Valley, which Taleban militants briefly overran. After the military ousted them in 2009, she began publicly speaking out about the need for girls’ education. She appeared frequently in the media and was given one of the country’s highest civilian honours for her bravery.