The 14-year-old Pakistani girl shot and critically wounded by the Taliban for promoting education for girls and criticizing the militant group traveled to Britain on Monday for further medical treatment, officials said.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Malala Yousufzai would receive specialized care in a hospital in the country’s National Health Service system.
“Last week’s barbaric attack on Malala Yousafzai and her school friends shocked Pakistan and the world. Malala’s bravery in standing up for the right of all young girls in Pakistan to an education is an example to us all,” Hague said in a statement.
Yousafzai is going to be treated at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, central England, U.K. officials told NBC News.
Yousufzai was leaving school in her hometown in the Swat Valley in northwest Pakistan on Oct. 9 when she was shot in the head and neck by the Taliban for speaking out against the militants and promoting education for girls.
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.
On Sunday, tens of thousands rallied in Pakistan’s largest city in support of Yousufzai.
The demonstration in the southern city of Karachi was by far the largest since Yousufzai and two of her classmates were shot.
Still, 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.
For msnbc host Melissa Harris-Perry, this senseless shooting implores her to ask: how can a 14-year-old child be considered such a threat that grown men fear her enough to feel the need to extinguish her voice?
“The Taliban may have harmed Malala physically, but… not her cause,” she said on Sunday’s Melissa Harris-Perry show.
To the Taliban, Harris-Perry says, “Your cowardly actions will now serve as a rallying cry for other young girls and women seeking empowerment and a better life through education.”