A heartless Taliban gunman walked up to a bus transporting children home from school, and shot a 14-year-old activist known for championing the education of girls and publicizing atrocities committed by the militant organization.
The attack targeted 14-year-old Malala Yousufzai, who is widely respected for her work promoting the education of women – something the Taliban strongly opposes. She was nominated last year for the International Children’s Peace Prize, and thankfully, survived the shooting.
As reported by the Associated Press:
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, calling Malala’s work “obscenity.”
“This was a new chapter of obscenity, and we have to finish this chapter,” said Taliban spokesman Ahsanullah Ahsan . “We have carried out this attack.”
Malala and her family had been threatened by the Taliban before for her activism.
The school bus was about to leave the school grounds in Mingora when a bearded man approached it and asked which one of the girls was Malala, said Rasool Shah, the police chief in the town. Another girl pointed to Malala, but the activist denied it was her and the gunmen then shot both of the girls, the police chief said.
Malala was shot twice – once in the head and once in the neck – but her wounds were not life-threatening, said Tariq Mohammad, a doctor at the main hospital in Mingora. The second girl shot was in stable condition, the doctor said.
Has it really come to this: shooting kids for speaking their mind? We pray the gunman is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Our hearts go out to Malala and her family.
Photo courtesy AP/Sherin Zada