UK trip: Zardari to visit Malala at Birmingham hospital

Published: December 7, 2012

Over the past months, malala has received messages of support from across the globe with some suggesting a Nobel Peace Prize for her. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: 

President Asif Ali Zardari will visit the United Kingdom on Saturday to meet 14-year-old peace activist Malala Yousafzai, who is being treated at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital, sources told The Express Tribune.

Foreign office officials, terming the visit as an unprecedented gesture by President Zardari, because the president did not have any diplomatic engagements in the UK other than meeting Malala.

President Zardari who is accompanied by Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar will meet Malala following a visit to Iran, a source privy to the president’s travel itinerary said.

Malala, who was shot while riding a school bus on October 9 in the Swat Valley, became the symbol of resistance against the Taliban, advocating access to education for girls in an area that has been one of the Taliban’s main strongholds in the country.

President

Over the past months, the teenage activist has received messages of support from across the globe with some suggesting a Nobel Peace Prize for her. However, back at home certain right-wing elements accused her of being part of the US conspiracy to push Pakistan for a fresh military offensive in the tribal areas.

In a special message, President Zardari said Malala stands tall as a symbol of girls’ education and of defiance against those who wish to impose their obscurantist agenda behind the facade of religion.

To reinforce the idea that Malala represents the government of Pakistan, a special initiative has been launched to give free education to the children.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 7th, 2012. 

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Reader Comments (45)

  • Nadir
    Dec 7, 2012 - 3:23AM

    How about donating the cost of the visit to Malala to girls education?

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  • Cautious
    Dec 7, 2012 - 4:02AM

    How many of the political and military leaders lifted a finger to help this child before she was attacked an gained notoriety?

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  • Helix
    Dec 7, 2012 - 5:13AM

    If the photos are any indication, it seems Malala is studying all the time !

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  • Toba Alu
    Dec 7, 2012 - 5:47AM

    @Helix:

    Look carefully she does not get any further than the table of contents. :-)
    On a serious note this case is not something to be proud of. Further normally I would be sure that if you do not have have any diplomatic engagements then you have to pay for the trip yourself; wish him good shopping.

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  • Raj - USA
    Dec 7, 2012 - 5:48AM

    Only reason I am not commenting here is because I have some hopes on Zardari and there is no one else now in Pakistan who can think beyond religion, not even his own party members.

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  • Arslan
    Dec 7, 2012 - 7:26AM

    This is only a cover up for a hidden meeting with someone for some Shady deal.

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  • Adeel Zafar
    Dec 7, 2012 - 8:03AM

    Mr. Zardari finally showing a gesture for his people. It means only one thing… elections are upon us!.

    Usually you’d expect presidents of the state to go on media when something big happens, like few month’s ago’s Factory Fire in karachi, or the Salala Checkpost .. I mean, Obama would be on TV that night, speaking on behalf of this people. Zardari, on the other hand, never spoke up on such events. Goes to show how loyal a president is towards his country. I wish one day we have a president like Obama.

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  • syed baqar ahsan
    Dec 7, 2012 - 8:58AM

    I feel sorry for Malala and Muktara Mai and other such case but this seem that they were not natural had purpose behind to all these incidents.West had complete story before hand to tarnish Pakistan on the forums where general of those countries develop hate.

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  • Ammar
    Dec 7, 2012 - 8:59AM

    Malala, The 8th Wonder of the World

    1st neuro-surgery of the world without hair removal
    1st neuro-surgery where stitches removed so early and patient was thanking fans after few days
    1st neuro-surgery where gun fired from klashinkov, bullet found is of pistol and left no mark
    1st gun-shot where bullet didn’t enter the head but instead in media’s head

    Biggest joke of the year, Malala Yousafzai

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  • Mirza
    Dec 7, 2012 - 9:42AM

    @Raj – USA: I agree with you 100%.
    It is only due to the progressive and secular policies of PPP that I tend to support them till another democratically elected govt comes to power. Taseer was killed because he did go and favor the innocent minority woman. It is easy to see only PPP/ANP leaders are the target of extremists not the rightwing leaders of Pakistan.
    Cheers,
    M

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  • Shahid
    Dec 7, 2012 - 10:01AM

    @Ammar:

    Exactly. Our Pakistani people are very innocent. Thanks to Media.

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  • Shahid
    Dec 7, 2012 - 10:02AM

    @Ammar:
    Exactly. Our Pakistani people are very innocent. Thanks to World’s Super Power Media.

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  • Faisal
    Dec 7, 2012 - 10:51AM

    Elections are near, why not have a “chance” meeting with his highness Altaf Hussain.

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  • yaz
    Dec 7, 2012 - 11:25AM

    Shame on Zardari for cashing in on the poor child. It’s their stupid & self serving policies due to which this happened not to mention 40000 plus civilian deaths. The people of Pakistan will not spare them.

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  • RizwanTKhan
    Dec 7, 2012 - 11:44AM

    So wasting all the travel and hotel cost just to meet the kid? The patriotic(of-course sarcastically) President can have skype meeting with her and save OUR tax money.

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  • Buttler
    Dec 7, 2012 - 11:46AM

    Cant he visit her in Pakistan…and what about the other girl which were atttacked again…

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  • Nitin Gandhi
    Dec 7, 2012 - 11:56AM

    Comments hows clearly Pakistanis are not at all ashamed on Malala incident….. until unless smae thing would happen with their own sister ans mother or else they will running to UK,USA,Australia, Europe for citizenship

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  • :(
    Dec 7, 2012 - 11:59AM

    @Ammar

    She had no neuro surgery yet. Please check your information please.

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  • Raza Khan
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:05PM

    Excellent gesture! Fully support our President.

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  • Kashif Zia
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:14PM

    @Ammar: I do not know that exactly how she was shot and treated, but I have no reason to deny whats been told. Do you have any “proof” of what you are claiming? Why are we always conspiring?

    The problem is that we want to see the things as we want them to see, not as they are. Accepting the realities of life is the first step towards making life better.

    And would somebody tell me WHY the super power USA would stage this so-called drama? What would USA get out of it?

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  • faraz
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:18PM

    @Ammar

    Are you a doctor; who told you that total hair removal is needed for surgery or that it takes ages for recovery? Do you have any idea of modern surgery? Come out of dull facebook pages

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  • faraz
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:20PM

    @Ammar

    Are you a doctor; who told you that total hair removal is needed for surgery or that it takes ages for recovery? Do you have any idea of modern surgery? Come out of dull facebook pagesRecommend

  • True Picture
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:23PM

    Time to get over this incident since she’s not going to return to Pakistan nor her family is ever going to comeback. There are many people in Pakistan who are doing way better in spreading education to children & they are not visible to outer world or Pakistanis as they work in silence away from any interest of being in the limelight of the media, they are the real heroes.

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  • Amitabh Bachchan
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:47PM

    Why no scars or stitch marks on the right eyebrow?

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  • Ahmad
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:48PM

    Shame on our president who did not spare the chance to visit his native UK to settle some business ventures,,,

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  • Amitabh Bachchan
    Dec 7, 2012 - 12:49PM

    Why no Pakistani Jouralist/Anchor visiting her and showing her story to the ppl of pakistan?

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  • Ammar
    Dec 7, 2012 - 1:10PM

    @ faraz

    Ya. I am a qualified doctor and her recovery profile is definitely out of the world, provided she was shot.

    Don’t want to fuel any conspiracy theory here. But you should appreciate that if a huge majority believes therez something fishy in the matter then everything is not so simple as it seems. Not against Malala personally or cause of education but how artificiality comes in and Media hypes about it out of proportions.

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  • Kashif Zia
    Dec 7, 2012 - 1:14PM

    @True Picture: Nobody is denying importance of ground level silent workers. But incidents like Malala also gives hope and motivation to there “real heroes”. Nations do not forget their heroes and icons. We should always remember what holds us as a nation, not to “get over” these.

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  • ok
    Dec 7, 2012 - 1:18PM

    @True Picture:
    I think Malala case is about symbolism.
    Nothing wrong in taking help of media to highlight your stand.
    Both kinds, people working in silence & people who are vocal about it should be credited.

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  • Parvez
    Dec 7, 2012 - 1:27PM

    @Raj – USA: You are right his thinking goes beyond religion and goes to money and then gets stuck.
    Using Malala to bolster his own image is simply shallow………

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  • Sad
    Dec 7, 2012 - 3:38PM

    How can Ammar’s comment get so many likes … something is surely wrong with this country, and its beyond despicable

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  • Shamy
    Dec 7, 2012 - 3:45PM

    You could just stay home and pray for her with all your heart and soul instead of spending fortunes (of OUR money) on YOUR UK trip !

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  • Saleem
    Dec 7, 2012 - 3:48PM

    @Sad: Why are you surprised. There are lots of mentally sick people in land of pure. There are lawyers who shower murderers with petals and there are doctors who have no humanity.Recommend

  • Fateh Mohammed
    Dec 7, 2012 - 4:57PM

    @Ammar … The terrorist did not enter the school bus the girls were not fired upon Malala and Kainat and others were not injured , Ammar being in the bus and an eye witness . What the fuss is all about .

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  • G. Din
    Dec 7, 2012 - 5:11PM

    @ Ammar
    “Malala, The 8th Wonder of the World…..”
    Please don’t be cruel to a little bud!Recommend

  • Its (still) Econonmy Stupid
    Dec 7, 2012 - 5:30PM

    @Ammar:
    Malala 2012 Is a remake of classic Nayirah 1990:

    Nayirah Testimony refers to the controversial testimony given before the non-governmentalCongressional Human Rights Caucus on October 10, 1990, by a female who provided only her first name, Nayirah. In her emotional testimony, Nayirah stated that after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait she had witnessed Iraqi soldiers take babies out of incubators in a Kuwaiti hospital, take the incubators, and leave the babies to die. Though reporters did not then have access to Kuwait, her testimony was regarded as credible at the time and was widely publicized. It was cited numerous times by United States senators and the president in their rationale to back Kuwait in the Gulf War.

    In 1992, it was revealed that Nayirah’s last name was al-Ṣabaḥ (Arabic: نيره الصباح‎) and that she was the daughter of Saud bin Nasir Al-Sabah, the Kuwaiti ambassador to the United States. Furthermore, it was revealed that her testimony was organized as part of the Citizens for a Free Kuwait public relations campaign which was run by Hill & Knowlton for the Kuwaiti government. Following this, al-Sabah’s testimony has largely come to be regarded as wartime propaganda.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nayirah_(testimony)
    How PR Sold the War in the Persian Gulf
    http://www.prwatch.org/books/tsigfy10.html

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  • HolierThanThough
    Dec 7, 2012 - 5:32PM

    No Huge Majority please that Mala is a US conspiracy…. its a mentally deranged minority that keeps shouting in forums.

    There are individuals that think that Malala is a conspiracy and the Shaitan’s who use Islam as a tool and kills everyone in the name of Religion are not behind it. But then those people are illiterate and even if they call themselves educated… it doesn’t take away their illiteracy.

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  • Hairaan
    Dec 7, 2012 - 6:26PM

    @Raj – USA:
    You mean thinking about religion is prohibited.

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  • Yusuf
    Dec 7, 2012 - 6:38PM

    Good Show Mr. President Zardari, now we expect you to walk down to Karachi Civil Hospital built by the British which is not far from Bambino Cinema. There are Malala like victims of Acid and Burns attacks.

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  • True Picture
    Dec 7, 2012 - 7:37PM

    @Kashif Zia:
    Well those heroes are never recognised globally! do you know why? because they do not serve the interests of USA & those who do they are given global coverage.Education is not the main purpose behind this recent media coverage all over International news channels with respect to Malala incident, their main objective was to highlight this “Taliban” thing & use it to make an outcry against Pakistanis & pressurise the Govt to start army operations in N Wazirsitan. Try to see the “true picture”, if they really do recognise people then why Edhi has never been given so much coverage? or why haven’t they recognised the fact that we Pakistanis have given 40-50 thousand lives for their unjust war on terror? students give donations to SOS, during floods, earth quake, for IDP & they even volunteer to teach children!!! are they any less than Malala? Please do some research on Malala, how & who brought her into media limelight :) as for symbolism, there are hundreds of them out here & they don’t need any media hype since people are aware of their work which inspires them.

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  • Raj - USA
    Dec 7, 2012 - 9:15PM

    @Hairaan:
    Religion is good in moderation and harmful in excess. Too much “Tyno” in not good.

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  • Lofted Shot
    Dec 7, 2012 - 10:37PM

    Ha! to say “Well Played Girl” ?

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  • Osman
    Dec 8, 2012 - 2:32AM

    He must be taking tips from Malala, so that he can escape from the country peacefully after the election(as she escaped without any trouble).

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  • HADI SAKEY
    Dec 8, 2012 - 7:29AM

    A visi to Malala in the hospital will justify his visit and also his TA/DA. What about his cronies? Who are they. No names no list of VVIPs. His visit to Malala will be just an eye wash to show it to the innocent people of Pakistan how humane he is.Recommend

  • Clear Black Bag
    Dec 9, 2012 - 11:19AM

    The most important question rises and this question rises here many suspects that why Zardari cancelled his Iran’s visit suddenly and went to UK and then France whereas in Iran Zardari had to sign the agreements with Irani officials regarding overcoming the energy crises and gas pipeline’s projects????????Recommend

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