News / Europe

Doctors: Pakistani Girl Shot by Taliban Is Able to Stand

Selah Hennessy
Doctors in Britain said Friday the teenage Pakistani girl who was shot last week by Taliban gunmen is able to stand with help and write. The Pakistani community is rallying around Malala Yousafzai's recovery at a hospital in the British city of Birmingham.

Dave Rosser is one of the doctors responsible for Yousafzai's treatment at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

"In terms of her injury she was struck just above the back of the left eye and the bullet went down through the side of her jaw, damaging the skull, the jaw joint on the left hand side. It went through the neck and lodged in the tissues above the shoulder blade on the left," he said.

Rosser said she is now doing well and, with assistance, has been able to stand up. He said she's also communicating freely. She has a tracheotomy tube in her neck, because the passing of the bullet swelled her airway - but, he said, she has been able to write her thoughts down.

"In terms of further care, we - the specialist team looking after her - are taking a view that she's going to need a couple of weeks to rehabilitate, make sure this infection has cleared up," said Rosser. "And, again, to use the phrase that if she is 'out of the woods,' then her skull will need reconstructing either by reinserting the piece of the bone that was removed initially or with a titanium plate."

The city is Britain's second-largest, where one-tenth of the population - that's 100,000 people - are Pakistani.

Some of Birmingham's neighborhoods reflect the dominant South Asian population in the stores that line the streets, reminding many of their home country.

Yasmin has owned this women's clothes store for the past two years. She, like many others in the Pakistani community here, are rallying around Yousafzai.

"Every child, every adult, every old person - they are all looking after her and praying for her, and I must say it probably will get her to some place where she wants to be," said Yasmin.

Many Pakistanis here say they believe the teenager is getting good treatment in Britain. But at this restaurant there were mixed feelings about what Yousafzai should do once she recovers.

"She is going to be so much safer here in the UK. If they take her back to Pakistan, she's not going to be safe there no chance," said one man on the street.

"May Allah give her a good strong health. Then she can go back and serve her community," said another man. "Then maybe in the future she will become a big politician and do good for the women's community."

Pakistani Taliban gunman shot Yousafzai on October 9, saying she promoted secularism and spoke out against the militant group.

There has been a large public outcry both inside and outside of Pakistan.

In Islamabad and other Pakistani cities, tens of thousands have rallied to protest the shooting. The Pakistani political party MQM helped organize some of the demonstrations.

Party spokesperson Mohammad Wasay Jalilsaid that for now, Yousafzai can make the most of her time in Britain.   

"I think she will be able to communicate what happened to her. And I think she will be able to communicate more easily here about her dream - what she can do, what she was thinking for Pakistan. She wants to see Pakistan as a liberal country, as an educated country," he said.

But with doctors in Britain saying Yousafzai is not yet "out of the woods," for now all hopes are still on her recovery.

You May Like

Photogallery Belgian Security Measures Foreshadow New Normal for Europe

Rising threat of terrorism, disaffected Muslim populations and open borders, along with refugee, migrant crisis, are creating perfect storm for Europe, which some analysts fear continent is ill-suited to weather

Competing Claims of Responsibility for Mali Hotel Attack

Malian authorities ask public for help in identifying gunmen killed in attack, amid conflicting claims of responsibility from multiple jihadist groups active in the country

Video Debt-ridden Refugees Await Onslaught of Lebanese Winter

Aid agencies are attempting to reduce potentially devastating consequences of freezing conditions and snowstorms that killed eight last year, including three Syrian refugees

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Linda from: Brownsville
October 21, 2012 6:59 PM
Hooray! Evil never wins!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against ISi
November 24, 2015 3:04 AM
The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against IS

The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Americans Sharpen Focus on Terrorism

Washington will be quieter than usual this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday, even as Americans across the nation register heightened concerns over possible terrorist threats. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports new polling data from ABC News and the Washington Post newspaper show an electorate increasingly focused on security issues after the deadly Islamic State attacks in Paris.

Video World Leaders Head to Paris for Climate Deal

Heads of state from nearly 80 countries are heading to Paris (November 30-December 11) to craft a global climate change agreement. The new accord will replace the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change that expired in 2012.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

Video Creating Physical Virtual Reality With Tiny Drones

As many computer gamers know, virtual reality is a three-dimensional picture, projected inside special googles. It can fool your brain into thinking the computer world is the real world. But If you try to touch it, it’s not there. Now Canadian researchers say it may be possible to create a physical virtual reality using tiny drones. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Video New American Indian Village Takes Visitors Back in Time

There is precious little opportunity to experience what life was like in the United States before its colonization by European settlers. Now, an American Indian village built in a park outside Washington is taking visitors back in time to experience the way of life of America's indigenous people. Carol Pearson narrates this report from VOA's June Soh.

Video Even With Hometown Liberated, Yazidi Refugees Fear Return

While the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar has been liberated from Islamic State forces, it's not clear whether Yazidi residents who fled the militants will now return home. VOA’s Mahmut Bozarslan talked with Yazidis, a religious and ethnic minority, at a Turkish refugee camp in Diyarbakır. Robert Raffaele narrates his report.

Video Nairobi Tailors Make Pope Francis’ Vestments

To ensure the pope is properly attired during his visit, the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops asked the Dolly Craft Sewing Project in the Nairobi slum of Kangemi to make the pope's vestments, the garments he will wear during the various ceremonies. Jill Craig reports.

Video Cross-Border Terrorism Puts Europe’s Passport-Free Travel in Doubt

The fallout from the Islamic State terror attacks in Paris has put the future of Europe’s passport-free travel area, known as the "Schengen Zone," in doubt. Several of the perpetrators were known to intelligence agencies, but were not intercepted. Henry Ridgwell reports from London European ministers are to hold an emergency meeting Friday in Brussels to look at ways of improving security.

Video El Niño Brings Unexpected Fish From Mexico to California

Fish in an unexpected spectrum of sizes, shapes and colors are moving north, through El Niño's warm currents from Mexican waters to the Pacific Ocean off California’s coast. El Nino is the periodic warming of the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this phenomenon thrills scientists and gives anglers the chance of a once-in-a-lifetime big catch. Faith Lapidus narrates.

Video Terrorism in Many Forms Continues to Plague Africa

While the world's attention is on Paris in the wake of Friday night's deadly attacks, terrorism from various sides remains a looming threat in many African countries. Nigerian cities have been targeted this week by attacks many believe were staged by the violent Islamist group Boko Haram. In addition, residents in many regions are forced to flee their homes as they are terrorized by armed militias. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Study: Underage Marriage Rate Higher for Females in Pakistan

While attitudes about the societal role of females in Pakistan are evolving, research by child advocacy group Plan International suggests that underage marriage of girls remains a particularly big issue in the country. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports how such marriages leads to further social problems.

VOA Blogs