PAKISTAN – For the first time since she was attacked two years ago, the world can now see the uniform that teenager Malala Yousafzai wore when she was shot in the head by the Taliban.
Malala, 17, has authorized the public display of the bloodied uniform, which includes a blouse, trousers and head scarf. It’s part of an exhibit at the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo, Norway, where she will be receiving the Nobel Peace Prize on Wednesday.
The Pakistani teen is the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner in history. She shares this year’s award with Kailash Satyarthi of India, who was also honored for fighting against the oppression of children and working for children’s right to education.
By the time she was 15 years old, Malala had already become an outspoken activist for girls’ right to education, but the Taliban, who were trying to push girls out of classrooms, had a formidable grip on northwestern Pakistan’s Swat Valley.
On October 9, 2012, Taliban gunmen tracked down her school bus. They asked where Malala was. Her classmates, under threat, pointed her out.
Malala was shot in the head. She was hospitalized in critical condition, unresponsive for three days. Eventually, doctors put Malala in a medically induced coma so an air ambulance could fly her from Pakistan to Britain for treatment. She recovered and continued her activism for girls’ right to education — despite more death threats from the Taliban.
“They can only shoot my body,” Malala told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour. “They cannot shoot my dreams.”
While she hasn’t returned to Pakistan since her shooting, Malala has doubled down on her efforts to improve education for girls around the world, including writing a memoir and making highly publicized trips to Syria and Nigeria.
Malala has said she wants the prime ministers of Pakistan and India to attend the ceremony Wednesday where she and Satyarthi will receive their awards.
Peace between the two countries, Yousafzai said, is important for their progress.
She said awarding the Peace Prize to a Pakistani Muslim and an Indian Hindu “gives a message to people of love between Pakistan and India, and between different religions.” (Released by cnn.com, Dec 9, 2014)