Malala Yousafzai shooting suspects are arrested in Pakistan

Children in conflicts

A group of men suspected of shooting the teenage education campaigner Malala Yousafzai have been arrested in Pakistan.

The country's army, police and intelligence services were part of an operation to detain 10 militants believed to be behind the 2012 attack.

Malala, who was 15 at the time, was shot in the head when Taliban gunmen boarded her school bus in Swat valley.

Two of her friends were also injured in the attack. All recovered and Malala went on to inspire the world when she made a speech to the United Nations in July 2013, in which she said: “One child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world.” Her speech was part of a Youth Takeover of the UN, organised by A World at School and Gordon Brown, UN Special Envoy for Global Education.

Pakistani army spokesman General Asim Bajwa told a news conference today: “The group involved in the attack on Malala Yousafzai has been arrested.”

He said they were members of a faction called “Shura”, part of the Pakistani Taliban. He said they were acting on orders from Mullah Fazlullah, the head of the Pakistani Taliban.

He said the Taliban had tried to kill Malala over her advocacy for gender equality and education for women. General Bajwa said the men were being interrogated and will appear in court soon.

Malala is now 17 and lives in England. Last year she was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and won the European Union's prestigious Sakharov human rights prize.

Earlier this year, she visited Jordan to meet refugees from Syria and also addressed the Girl Summit in London, which tackled the subjects of child marriage and female genital mutliation.

She told delegates from more than 50 countries: “Education is the best way we can fight all the problems we’re discussing now.”


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