Pakistani teenage rights activist Malala Yousufzai, who was shot in the head during an assassination attempt by the Taliban, was today sent to Britain for treatment as she needs “prolonged medical care”, the Pakistani military said.
The 14-year-old, who has been in the intensive care unit of the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology since Thursday, was flown to Britain in an air ambulance provided by the United Arab Emirates, the statement said.
The decision to shift her outside Pakistan was made by a board of civil and military doctors that has been supervising Malala’s treatment.
Malala needs “prolonged medical care” and the decision to shift her to Britain was made “with the consent of Malala’s parents”, the statement said.
The government will bear all expenses for Malala’s treatment abroad, the military said.
No details were provided by the military about her condition. Earlier in the morning, the air ambulance provided by the UAE landed in Rawalpindi and was stationed at the military airbase at Chaklala, located a short distance from the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology.
Yesterday, the doctors treating Malala had said she was in a stable condition and was making “steady and satisfactory progress”.
She was successfully taken off the ventilator for a short while before being reconnected to “avoid fatigue”, officials said.
Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UAE Jamil Ahmed Khan said the royal family of the emirates had arranged the air ambulance for Malala. Visas were specially arranged for the
aircraft’s crew and six doctors.
Malala has been on ventilator since she was shifted from Peshawar to the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology in Rawalpindi on Thursday after doctors removed a bullet lodged near her backbone.
She was shot in the head and neck.
The banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan claimed responsibility for the attack, saying Malala was targeted for backing Western ideals and a secular government.
The shooting of the teenager has been denounced round the world.
Pakistani authorities have offered a reward of Rs 1 crore for information that leads to the capture of Malala’s attackers. People across Pakistan have been offering prayers for Malala’s recovery.