Malala returns to home town in Pakistan


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Media captionMalala YousafzaI: “My focus is only working for the good”

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai has returned to her hometown in Pakistan for the first time since she was shot there by Taliban militants, security officials say.

Ms Yousafzai, 20, was shot in the head by a gunman for campaigning for female education in 2012.

Her family’s home region of Swat was once a militant stronghold, and she was attacked on a school bus there at 15.

It had been unclear if she would visit the area because of security concerns.

On Thursday, it was announced that Ms Yousafzai had returned from the UK to Pakistan for the first time since she was attacked.

Ms Yousafzai delivered an emotional speech at the prime minister’s office in Islamabad:

“Always it has been my dream that I should go to Pakistan and there, in peace and without any fear, I can move on streets, I can meet people, I can talk to people.

“And I think that it’s my old home again… so it is actually happening, and I am grateful to all of you.”

Her trip to Pakistan is expected to last four days. Officials from her Malala Fund group are travelling with her, local media report.

Why was she attacked?

At the age of 11, Ms Yousafzai began writing an anonymous diary for BBC Urdu about her life under Taliban rule. A documentary film was made about her in 2009.

She soon became a vocal advocate of female education amid militant suppression in Pakistan, and was deliberately attacked on a school bus in October 2012 by Islamist militants. Malala’s story brought international attention.

The Pakistani Taliban said at the time that they had shot her because she was “pro-West” and “promoting Western culture in Pashtun areas”.

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University Hospitals Birmingham

Image caption

After initial surgery in Pakistan for her injuries in 2012, she was transferred to the UK for her recovery

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