Malala Yousafzai, the 20-year-old Pakistani education rights icon, has returned home to her native Swat Valley for the first time since being shot by the Taliban there more than five years ago.
Yousafzai flew from the capital Islamabad to Mingora, the main town in Swat, by helicopter on Saturday morning. She briefly met friends and teachers from her old secondary school before heading to an event organised in her honour at a nearby college.
“Mostly the trip is private, she is visiting her friends and family in Mingora,” Akhtar Hayat Khan, a senior police official, told The Pakistani media – The Dawn.
Yousafzai returned to Pakistan on Thursday, the first time she had been able to return since Pakistan Taliban gunmen shot her in the head on her way to school in October 2012.
Since then, she has championed the cause of young women’s right to an education, campaigning around the world and raising millions of dollars to launch programmes in Pakistan, Nigeria, Kenya, Lebanon and elsewhere.