MOSCOW, September 13 (RIA Novosti) – Taliban fighters suspected of attacking a Pakistani teenage activist Malala Yousafzai are said to have been taken into custody by Pakistani authorities on Friday, Reuters reports.
“The entire gang involved in the murder attempt... has been busted," said General Asim Saleem Bajwa, Pakistan’s army spokesman, adding that the gunmen are members of Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, an organization, coordinating activities of several Pakistani extremist militant groups located near the Afghan Border.
Malala Yousafzai, a human rights activist, who had launched a campaign, aiming at extension of education opportunities for girls and women, was shot in the head on her way home from school. After the attack she was in critical condition that drove her parents to send her to Great Britain for treatment and rehabilitation.
At the time of the incident she was 15 years old, but her human rights activities began much earlier. At the age of 12, she started writing about her life in a BBC blog, describing horrifying living conditions under the rule of Taliban forces, known for their brutal treatment of women. After seizing control of much of the country in 2009, the Taliban launched a campaign against female education, closing numerous schools and prohibiting girls from taking part in educational activities.
After the attack, Malala became a symbol of struggle for women’s rights and resistance under radical regimes. During her treatment period, she was encouraged by numerous supporters and sympathizers from all around the world, who were inspired by her courage and shocked by brutality of the incident.
Malala’s father believes that the arrest of his daughter’s attackers is a great step forward in fighting terrorist activities in Pakistan. "This is good news for our family and most importantly, for the people of Pakistan and the civilized world. This first step of apprehending Malala's attackers signifies the beginning of real hope for the hundreds of thousands of people whose lives have been affected by terrorism," he said in a statement.
Malala, aged 17, is currently living with her family in Great Britain, unable to return home because of the danger, posed by Taliban to her and her parents. Last year, Malala was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and won the EU's Sakharov human rights prize, which was established to award organizations and persons who have committed themselves to the protection of human rights and freedom of thought.