Radio Sandwell Local News

Malala Yousafzai attends first day at school in Birmingham

2013-03-19 20:37:13

Malala Yousafzai

Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by the Taliban after campaigning for girls' rights to education, has attended her first day at school in the UK.

The 15-year-old was shot on a school bus in Pakistan in October.

She has now recovered following treatment at Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

She described starting at the city's Edgbaston High School for Girls as "the most important day" of her life.

She said: "I think it is the happiest moment that I'm going back to school, this is what I dreamed, that all children should be able to go to school because it is their basic right.

"I am so proud to wear the uniform because it proves I am a student and that I am living my life and learning."

Malala is in year nine and will start her GCSE curriculum next year.

She said she was looking forward to learning about politics and law.

'Normal teenager'

Headmistress Dr Ruth Weekes said she believed Malala needed the stability of being at school.

She said: "She wants to be a normal teenage girl and to have the support of other girls around.

"Talking to her, I know that's something she missed during her time in hospital."

Malala is staying in the UK after her father Ziauddin Yousafzai was appointed education attaché at the Pakistan consulate in Birmingham.

Surgeons in Pakistan removed a bullet from Malala's head after she was shot returning home from school in the Swat valley on 9 October.

She was flown to Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital for specialist treatment.

The teenager had a titanium plate and cochlear implant fitted and was discharged from the hospital in February to continue her rehabilitation.

The Taliban in Pakistan has threatened the lives of both Mr Yousafzai and Malala since the shooting.

She has received support from around the world, with tens of thousands of people signing an online petition calling for her to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.


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