Taliban says its attack on Pakistani schoolgirl justified

ISLAMABAD Tue Oct 16, 2012 8:16am EDT

1 of 14. A student holds a placard with a picture of schoolgirl Malala Yousufzai, who was shot on October 9 by the Taliban, during a rally in Lahore October 16, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Mohsin Raza

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ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Taliban insurgents said on Tuesday that the Pakistani schoolgirl its gunmen shot in the head deserved to die because she had spoken out against the group and praised U.S. President Barack Obama.

Malala Yousufzai, 14, was flown to Britain on Monday, where doctors said she has every chance of making a "good recovery".

The attack on Yousufzai, who had been advocating education for girls, drew widespread condemnation.

Pakistani surgeons removed a bullet from near her spinal cord during a three-hour operation the day after the attack last week, but she now needs intensive specialist follow-up care.

Authorities have said they have made several arrests in connection with the case but have given no details.

Pakistan's Taliban described Yousufzai as a "spy of the West".

"For this espionage, infidels gave her awards and rewards. And Islam orders killing of those who are spying for enemies," the group said in a statement.

"She used to propagate against mujahideen (holy warriors) to defame (the) Taliban. The Quran says that people propagating against Islam and Islamic forces would be killed.

"We targeted her because she would speak against the Taliban while sitting with shameless strangers and idealized the biggest enemy of Islam, Barack Obama."

Yousufzai, a cheerful schoolgirl who had wanted to become a doctor before agreeing to her father's wishes that she strive to be a politician, has become a potent symbol of resistance against the Taliban's efforts to deprive girls of an education.

Pakistanis have held some protests and candlelight vigils but most government officials have refrained from publicly criticizing the Taliban by name over the attack, in what critics say is a lack of resolve against extremism.

"We did not attack her for raising voice for education. We targeted her for opposing mujahideen and their war," said the Taliban. "Shariah (Islamic law) says that even a child can be killed if he is propagating against Islam."

(Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan)

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Comments (37)
2186eau wrote:
The Taliban is a narco organization that deserves no respect.

Oct 15, 2012 9:27pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
talamox wrote:
Thank you 2186eau for such an eye opening comment. We are all aware of what the Taliban money-making enterprises are. My heart and all positive powers are directed to the complete recover of the valiant young warrior, Malala. I ask that all good people who read this do the same.

Oct 16, 2012 1:37am EDT  --  Report as abuse
loBomal wrote:
And when will the countries which are infested with Taliban & Al Qaeda are likely to recover?

Oct 16, 2012 6:00am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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