Malala visits hometown in Swat Valley

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Malala Yousafzai, the 16-year-old Pakistani advocate for girls education who was shot in the head by the Taliban in 2012, officially opens The Library of Birmingham in Birmingham, central England, on September 3, 2013. Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai, shot in the head by a Taliban militant last October after campaigning for girls' right to education, gave an address as she officially opened the new Library of Birmingham. AFP PHOTO / PAUL ELLIS

MINGORA : Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai visited Mingora her hometown in Swat Valley on Saturday for the first time since she was shot by the Taliban as a teenager.

Mingora is where Malala’s family was living and where she was attending school on October 9, 2012, when a gunman boarded her school bus, asked “Who is Malala?”, and shot her.

Malala was accompanied by State Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, her family and others as she travelled by an army helicopter from Islamabad to Swat.

After arriving in Swat, Malala met with friends and family before visiting the all-boys Swat Cadet College Guli Bagh, some 15 kilometres (nine miles) outside of Mingora, the district’s main town.

Roads leading to the 20-year-old education activist´s home in Mingora were blocked off early on Saturday. The 20-year-old broke into tears after visiting her hometown.

“My first visit to Swat valley after 5 and a half years since the attack. I have never felt so happy. I am proud of my land and culture. The Cadet College is beautiful and I thank the staff and principal for welcoming me. Best wishes and prayers,” Malala wrote in the guest book of the college.

She said that peace was restored in the region due to huge sacrifices rendered by security forces in war against terrorism for sake of the country progress.

She also visited Fizagat Recreation Park in her hometown.

Malala returned back to Pakistan on Thursday, her first trip home since she was shot and airlifted abroad for treatment.

Orignally published by INP

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