Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai on Thursday returned to Pakistan for the first time since being shot by Taliban militants in her hometown Swat in 2012.
Accompanied by her parents and other officials of Malala Fund, the 20-year-old human rights activist arrived at Shaheed Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Islamabad.
In 2012, Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban for promoting female education. She was later awarded the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize for her work in championing education for young women and girls across the world.
The officials kept her trip and all engagements in Pakistan secret due to security reasons and media persons were not even allowed to capture her arrival at the airport.
“Pakistan welcomes ‘Gul Makai’ [a nick name of Malala] to her home. We are proud of you,” Mohammad Faisal, spokesman for Pakistan’s Foreign Office tweeted on her arrival.
Later, Malala met Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and also participated in a gathering at the Prime Minister House in Islamabad.
Abbasi warmly welcomed Malala on her return to the country and appreciated her efforts for the girls education across the world.
“Pakistan is proud of you and you are an asset for our country,” the premier said.
He said Malala has made the nation proud at every forum and that she is a role model for the young generation.
“Malala is also a victim of terrorism but today we defeated the terrorists in Pakistan by bringing back peace in our country,” Abbasi maintained.
Addressing the gathering, a visibly emotional Malala broke into tears as she spoke of coming home.
“Today is the happiest day of my life, because I have returned to my country, I have stepped foot on my nation's soil again and am among my own people." Malala remarked.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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