Taliban attack: Malala out of immediate danger

Published: October 11, 2012

Malala receiving treatment at the hospital. PHOTO: FILE

PESHAWAR: As the nation waited with bated breath through most of Tuesday, doctors treating peace icon Malala Yousafzai announced on Wednesday that her condition was ‘satisfactory’ following a three-and-a-half-hour surgery.

The operation, which took place at a military hospital in Peshawar, was successful in extracting the bullet from her body. The 14-year-old child activist from Swat was airlifted  to the hospital after initially receiving treatment at Saidu Sharif Hospital.

A senior doctor who was part of the team that operated on Malala told The Express Tribune on condition of anonymity that “earlier, she was under observation and her condition was stable; however, later I got a call from the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in the middle of night saying the patient’s condition was deteriorating, which forced us to go for surgery around 2 am.”

“Her condition is satisfactory following the surgery,” he added. However, he parried a question about shifting Malala abroad for treatment, saying he was not in a position to comment on this.

Malik’s statement

Interior Minister Rehman Malik who paid a visit to CMH told reporters at the Peshawar airport that Malala’s condition was out of danger and that a decision to send her abroad for treatment has been postponed.

“She is gradually recovering,” Malik said, adding that doctors have put her under observation for 48 hours.

He said that security personnel would be assigned to ensure Malala’s safety. In addition, passports for her and her family have been prepared ‘in case of an emergency’. An airport official also said “A PIA plane which reached Peshawar earlier on Wednesday is on standby, and all necessary medical facilities have been provided on this plane,” in case she needs to be flown out in an emergency.

Contrary to a statement made by the provincial authorities, Malik claimed that Malala’s attackers had been identified, adding: “We will not let them escape.”

K-P govt initiative

While the interior minister seemed to be aware of who the culprits behind the attack were, the K-P government announced a Rs10 million reward for anyone who was able to identify the attackers. Provincial Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain told the media, “The identity of those identifying persons involved in the Malala attack will not be revealed.”

Hussain also confirmed that “There is no need, now, to take her (Malala) to any foreign country for treatment, the doctors say,” at least for the time being.

He appealed to the nation to pray for her health. “Malala has become a voice for peace which cannot be choked till Doomsday,” the emotionally charged minister said. He added that while his government believed in negotiations, the time had now come to face terrorists with unanimity of purpose.

Investigations

A probe was also initiated on Wednesday into the attack. Security forces apprehended a number of people including Malala’s school teacher, the school watchman and the driver of the van which was targeted. They were taken to an undisclosed location. In all, 200 suspects have been rounded up so far, although several were released after initial interrogations.

The investigation team along with security forces visited the crime scene as well as Malala’s school to collect evidence. Security has been beefed up in the area in wake of the assassination attempt.

A student accompanying Malala in the ill-fated van, identified as Shazia, who was also shot, has been shifted to a hospital in Peshawar due to her critical condition. Shazia was shot in the leg. The injured girl’s parents are paying for her hospital expenses themselves.

Speaking to reporters at the press briefing, White House spokesperson Jay Carney said that the US has offered any necessary assistance to Malala. “As part of this offer, the US military has agreed to provide air ambulance and medical treatment at a facility suitable for her condition if it becomes necessary.” WITH ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY ABDUR RAUF IN PESHAWAR AND HAZRAT ALI IN SWAT

(Read: What next after Malala?)

Published in The Express Tribune, October 11th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (46)

  • Kazim
    Oct 11, 2012 - 2:36AM

    Thank God!

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  • Aviator
    Oct 11, 2012 - 2:41AM

    Good news, hope is now returning for Malala.

    But if the provincial minister knows about who did this, then why wont he have them arrested?

    We must continue to put pressure on the government to get the criminals, or else the Taliban will just walk away free to attack Malala again!

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  • Usman Chatta
    Oct 11, 2012 - 2:47AM

    God bless her and may she recover from her attack quickly. There must be no more half measures against the animals- the military should launch an all out offensive to obliterate them and their (mostly) Afghan counterparts. In the long term, we must adopt a secular Turkey-esque model if Pakistan is to fulfill its potential.

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  • French
    Oct 11, 2012 - 2:59AM

    Hope that everyone understand that force is the only way to deal with this talibans

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  • Maha
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:08AM

    Why is Malala is so important against all the children die every day in Pakistan. More children die from drones than from taliban attacks. I do agree that we should pray for Malala and we should provide all the support she needs. I just don’t understand the hype here so much that Obama has to express it too. What about Malala’s friend that was also wounded in the attack? Daily 15 people die Karachi why are their lives are not important as compared to one life of Malala?

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  • rashid
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:10AM

    thank GOD she is recovering…………………..but can the government pay the expenses for treatement of shazia as well? can it? is she not a pakistani? hypocrites they have to treat all as equal

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  • ALI
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:14AM

    President OBHAMA ordered CIA to Kill the Malala Yousafza in order to reduce the pressure due to Imran Khan peace March against drone. As Obhama want to show there is Talban so my Drone policy is not wrong. \

    Obhama Order to kill her only to show there is so much Talban in Pakistan, Obhama want to reduce presure after IMran khan peace March.Why Talban not killed her in last three years as she was there, Why they select to kill this time????

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  • Nadir
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:24AM

    “Shazia was shot in the leg. The injured girl’s parents are paying for her hospital expenses themselves.” What the!?!

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  • rashid
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:35AM

    @nadir bro thats what i commented but ET blocked it out
    good to know that government is providing all the care to malala but all citizens are equal all should be treated equally why no one is even bothering about the other girl poor shazia double standards!!!Recommend

  • Alamgir
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:37AM

    @ALI:
    Spot on brother.

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  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:39AM

    Great news. Thank God..Shame on authorites who are charging medical expenses from other innocent victims.

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  • Barbara
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:43AM

    @ALI:
    Ali – I live in the United States and I believe our drones are terrible thing to listen to each day – to live under that threat of drones. We need to stop drones over your country…but to shoot and try to kill a 14 year old girl who only wants to help other Pakistan girls live a better life – is more terrible.

    The two instances are not related…drones must stop. Drones will stop when these types of killers are no longer allowed to live freely among you.

    Our tax dollars are paying for drones…but our tax dollars will never be spent to support killers of children who show more bravery than most Americans.

    We live in freedom – to protest, to complain, to not pay taxes if we wish..(course we will be billed)…freedom for women – all over the world is most important…more important than anything. If we can not learn to live together on this world – what hope is the future? Our planet is very small – we are very insignificant in comparison to the universe…what will our history say about us one day? That we terrorized children – girls – that we killed because someone did not believe as we believe? This is not the teaching of Allah, God, Yahweh, or any other name for the one True God. He is ashamed of what we have become!

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  • Afridi
    Oct 11, 2012 - 3:54AM

    she is inspiration to young girls

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  • B.Ali
    Oct 11, 2012 - 4:21AM

    a great defeat for those crazy extremist , and a great win of the ideas of malalai

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  • B.Ali
    Oct 11, 2012 - 4:43AM

    @ALI
    a conspricy theory or may be true
    any how a defeat for those crazy extremist and a win of education and knowledge

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  • Spud
    Oct 11, 2012 - 5:27AM

    @ALI: Your comment is that of a deranged mind. In spite of what Muslims think of westerners we are not as inhuman as some of your fellow Muslims are. Just go around the world and see what is happening in Muslim world. You go around creating death and destruction for a stupid video but accept the Syrian army killings over 35000 people without a word of protest. Seems to me your priorities are all warped. If you think Islam is a religion of peace think twice and learn from a humanitarian and not from another twisted mind..

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  • naeem khan Manhattan,Ks
    Oct 11, 2012 - 5:30AM

    Our prayers are with both Malala and Shazia, Please God help these young innocent girls, My heart goes out to both of them. I appreciate Jay Carney’s statement ,“As part of this offer, the US military has agreed to provide air ambulance and medical treatment at a facility suitable for her condition if it becomes necessary.” Thank you sir for your kind offer and her parents should avail it if necessary. Majority of Pakistanis also appreciate the help during the floods and earthquake.

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  • AllahRukha
    Oct 11, 2012 - 5:37AM

    @ALI:
    How did you find out this? I am sure you know that how much Islam abhors those who lie and put slanders on others.

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  • numbersnumbers
    Oct 11, 2012 - 6:31AM

    @ALI:
    And of course you can prove that “President Ohbama ordered CIA to kill Malala”! Also please tell us WHO has slaughtered nearly 40,000 Pakistanis over the last decade (also wounding probably twice that number) !

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  • khalid
    Oct 11, 2012 - 6:38AM

    Thank God she is well, also credit goes to our Doctors , we have very competent surgeons and physicians in our country, some of them trained in UK and USA, its only our politicians and elite who waste our money for treatment abroad, our interior minister suggested sending Malala to Dubai , I have worked in Dubai as a Doctor, mind you some of our hospitals in pakistan provide far better care and I also saw him mentioning flying surgeons from UK and USA, we have very competent neurosurgeons and some of them are USA board certified and FRCS from UK. Recommend

  • Oct 11, 2012 - 6:58AM

    @Maha:
    100% agreed with you.
    @Ali:
    In Broadway we can`t deny your point.
    @Barbara:
    you people must understand and differentiate between the Taliban and terrorist.

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  • Pakistani
    Oct 11, 2012 - 7:02AM

    May God bless her, hope she gets through all this soon. I think we need to look at things more closely & then pass comments. It is strange that Government is only worried about Malala & not the other two girls who were shot! They are human after all as well & Government should provide all the treatment needed free of cost! it is time that we stop being a hypocrite, we just show our concern & compassion for some known person! what about the innocent young babies who die from drone attacks??? what about those people who are dying in Karachi??? every persons life is just as important as Malala’s. Lastly, please do some research regarding Malala, I would blame her father for pushing her into this mess! He was working for some NGO (probably still does) when Swat was under attack from the insurgents, then he introduced his daughter ( at that time she was hardly 10 or 11 years old) to the media as he was carrying out a campaign against those insurgents & in favour Army operation. I think we would have not seen her if her father was just a normal working guy & not a NGO activist. Blame the father & blame the government for not providing security to common man.

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  • maestro
    Oct 11, 2012 - 7:10AM

    Thank God and InshAllah she will be fine. People asking why she is being given so much attention. She is a girl from Swat who started blogging against the illiterate “talibans” at the age of 9, won the national peace award and wants to be a doctor to be able to serve others. She is a NATIONAL HERO and InshAllah God will take revenge on the beasts who did this. Pak Army, time to stop waiting and being patient – declare full out war against all so called taliban and mullahs who don’t know a word of the Quran because they can’t even read. Our Prophet (SWA) said “‘the one who is not kind to children, is not amongst us”. These are not muslims, in fact they have no religion or faith in anything except violence and love for shaitan- they are barbarians who must be dealt with as such.

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  • maestro
    Oct 11, 2012 - 7:13AM

    And gov’t and people – please help Shazia and her family too.

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  • Zubair
    Oct 11, 2012 - 9:21AM

    Real Pakhtoon never shoots at females… Such shooters are donkies!

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  • Faisal
    Oct 11, 2012 - 9:36AM

    KP government can give the money to Rehman malik because he has identified the culprits.Recommend

  • SC
    Oct 11, 2012 - 9:54AM

    @Barbara:

    without getting into any argument or debate… just a suggestion. Lets divert your & our tax dollars towards educating people instead of bombing their ideology to our liking…

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  • Hammad
    Oct 11, 2012 - 10:22AM

    every human life is precious so why government not providing similar medical facilities to 02 other injured girls & they have to pay hospital expenses by themselves.Please spread this message so that government also provide if not equal but free medical facilities to other 02 girls.

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  • Indian Wisdom
    Oct 11, 2012 - 10:25AM

    @Barbara:
    Very sane response. Agreed 100%

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  • aslam
    Oct 11, 2012 - 10:25AM

    A student accompanying Malala in the ill-fated van, identified as Shazia, who was also shot, has been shifted to a hospital in Peshawar due to her critical condition. Shazia was shot in the leg. The injured girl’s parents are paying for her hospital expenses themselves.

    why not pay for shazia medical expenses? she is also our future and she is also our sister.

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  • Nasamajh
    Oct 11, 2012 - 11:02AM

    The thing is that if Drones are used against Taliban then why would they attack Malala to distract world’s attention from the drone issue which is in their favour?? The question is that is Malala attacked are they the same “Talibans” who are being targeted by Drones?

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  • ALI
    Oct 11, 2012 - 11:08AM

    I hate all Talban! I not like any sort of Talban,

    We must understand President Obhama is most powerful person and He has licensee to kill. He gave permission to kill people in Drone attacks. By giving order to kill MALALA the whole world media will forget the Imran peace march and will start to talk about terrorist Talban. I hate all Talban, I am not supporting them, But we must see who will be the beneficiary to that murder. Of course Talban not. But only Obhama as there is election in US soon,

    Why Talban not killed her in last three years as she was there, Why they select to kill this time?????

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  • IceSoul
    Oct 11, 2012 - 11:24AM

    @Maha: You conveniently forgot to mention the terrorists killed in drone attacks. Such as Qari Hussain, also known as Ustad e Fadyeen, the architect of suicide attacks in Pakistan and therefore the murdered of THOUSANDS of Pakistanis (including hundreds of children).

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  • god
    Oct 11, 2012 - 11:30AM

    @ALI:
    and we are in pakistan.Recommend

  • MyHeartSpeaks
    Oct 11, 2012 - 11:34AM

    Contrary to a statement made by the
    provincial authorities, Malik claimed
    that Malala’s attackers had been
    identified, adding: “We will not let
    them escape.”

    while the other part of the news say,

    the K-P government announced a Rs10
    million reward for anyone who was able
    to identify the attackers.

    Isn’t it a contradiction?? That’s shows the incompetence of govt.

    Moreover, Rehman Malik in another widely circulated Urdu newspaper told that

    he cannot verify the claim of attack from
    taliban.

    Below is the link:
    http://jang.com.pk/jang/oct2012-daily/10-10-2012/u123332.htm

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  • Nadeem
    Oct 11, 2012 - 11:47AM

    @Maha:
    Can you kindly give us some numbers, names, whereabouts, of these mysterious children who have been dying due to drones bu for some reason, despite a lot of hue and cry from the religious parties and IK, we have not learnt their names. A siple list with ages would do. But I am sure, you won’t be able to produce any such list, beause you like many others are being misled by the religious-right about this clear and resent danger that is now lurking ever clser then before.

    Recommend

  • Nadeem
    Oct 11, 2012 - 11:52AM

    @ALI:
    Oh come on, how idiotic can you be? You will only come to realise when these barbarians will reach your doorstep. Or may be even then people like you will give them benefit of doubt.

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  • Aijaz Haider
    Oct 11, 2012 - 12:26PM

    “Contrary to a statement made by the provincial authorities, Malik claimed that Malala’s attackers had been identified, adding: “We will not let them escape.”
    “While the interior minister seemed to be aware of who the culprits behind the attack were, the K-P government announced a Rs10 million reward for anyone who was able to identify the attackers.”
    1.It seems thar Dr.Rehman Malik is gunning for the Rs10 million reward!
    2.Shaza and Kaainat also deserve free medical treatment like Malala.
    3.TTP must be eliminated, obliterated, removed for good asap
    Regards.

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  • M.Ahmer Ali
    Oct 11, 2012 - 12:38PM

    May Allah Almighty bestow upon her His greatest ever and endless blessings and favors and may get her well soon and destroy the Taliban who tried to kill her…….Aameen Summa Aameen…..Recommend

  • Saad
    Oct 11, 2012 - 12:45PM

    Ya Allah bless her, because of the daughters like her, Pakistan is a proud nation!!!

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  • M.Ahmer Ali
    Oct 11, 2012 - 12:52PM

    Thankful and grateful to Allah Almighty.Taliban did really really really wrongful by showing this barbaric,shameful and most saddened activity with the innocent and sinless little girl only to implement their own hand-made and self-made Islam forcefully on gunpoint…….
    Insha Allah Almighty definitely she shall be saved and rescued…….Recommend

  • AllahRukha
    Oct 11, 2012 - 12:52PM

    @Maha:
    *Daily 15 people die Karachi why are their lives are not important as compared to one life of Malala? *

    Yeah. I would like to know that too. Why the government and armed forces spend so much money on the security of Abdul Qadir Khan when others are dying in the parts of the country.
    Every one should be treated equally. Whether its CJP, A.Q. Khan or a street vendor.

    Recommend

  • Huma
    Oct 11, 2012 - 1:16PM

    Why isn’t the other kid’s hospital bills being paid by the government?

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  • khan
    Oct 11, 2012 - 1:54PM

    ye sub shumali waziristan me operation kerne ke liye ye game kiya giya hy.Recommend

  • A J Khan
    Oct 11, 2012 - 1:55PM

    May God grant her early recovery. Ameen.
    Talibani cult is based on deep public humiliation, injury and disgrace. They do not believe in human dignity, quality of life. They need pliant human bodies (Just the meat portion) without soul who would submit to them rather than the One and Only, the Creator, the Rehman and Rahim. They promote public contempt. Their belief is based on hate, violence and intimidation.
    Those who support their belief is not amongst the followers of this great religion of peace, where the religion takes it birth from Word Iqra, and where the day start with the praise of Rehman and Rahim.

    Recommend

  • Shaheen A
    Oct 15, 2012 - 10:28PM

    Attack on Malaala is condemnable & every Pakistani wants her to get well ,but two impotent things are missing from all the media hype & discussions.

    1- The attack was carried out by ‘Pakistan Tehreek e Taliban’ an outfit completely separate & disowned by Afghan Taliban, This PTT is working to damage strategic assets of Pakistan like the P3 Orion & AWACS air crafts worth billions of dollars, killing army personnel’s & innocent civilians, all serving no interests of Afghans & Afghan Talibaans. We must ask our self who is the beneficiary of all this? Who is the beneficiary of a weak & destabilized Pakistan? Isn’t it those who came from thousands of miles to wage war against Afghans, or our neighbor from east aspiring to become a super power. the answer to both questions is YES! It is not the Taalibaan but PTT who are nothing but touts of our enemies who are responsible, a fact which must be highlighted by our media

    2- Hasn’t this Malaala issue with associated media hype over-shadowed & suppressed the protests against the film insulting the whole Muslim Ummah? The sad answer is again YES!

    Isn’t it a shame that our media, our politicians, & our so called ‘civil society’ have fallen head over heels into this trap to become instruments in the hands of those who want to damage Pakistan, & who want to malign Islam & Muslims. It is time for us to wake up & open our eyes to recognize our real external as well as internal enemies.

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