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Malala In Pakistan For First Visit Since Being Shot By Taliban


Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai

The youngest Nobel laureate, Malala Yousafzai, landed in Islamabad in the wee hours on March 29 after spending nearly six years abroad, according to media reports.

Reports said Malala, her immediate family, and officials of the Malala Foundation charity flew into Islamabad from Birmingham, England, via Dubai.

Reports said Malala is scheduled to stay in Pakistan until April 2 and will meet with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on March 29. Reportedly, the prime minister's office has organized an event to welcome her.

Officials said Malala, 20, is scheduled to discuss the prospects of promoting education in less-developed areas of the country with Pakistani authorities. They said her visit was kept secret for security reasons.

Malala was shot in the head in October 2012 by Taliban gunmen for promoting girls' right to education, leaving her disfigured and with a brain injury that made her struggle to speak.

Malala went to England for advanced medical treatment and has been living there ever since.

She resumed her campaign to promote girls' education, which earned her the Nobel Prize in 2014. She is also a United Nations Messenger of Peace and heads a humanitarian foundation focused on children's education.

Last August, Malala enrolled at the prestigious Oxford University in England.

Malala first came into the spotlight as a schoolgirl, when she started writing under the pseudonym "Gul Mukai" a diary of her life under Taliban rule in her hometown of Swat. Malala strongly advocated education through her diary, which was featured on BBC Urdu.

It was not clear whether Malala and her family would visit Swat during their visit, something that would require extraordinary security clearance measures, officials said.

Based on reporting by RFE/RL's Radio Mashaal and The Express Tribune
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