Conflict & Justice

Pakistan issues $1 million bounty over Taliban shooting of Malala Yousufzai (VIDEO)


Indian sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik gives final touches on a sand sculpture in honour of Pakistani girl Malala Yousufzai at Puri beach, some 65 kilometers from Bhubaneswar, on October 16, 2012.

Pakistan has put a $1 million bounty on the Taliban spokesman who announced that the group was responsible for the shooting of Malala Yousufzai.

Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Eshan claimed responsibility for the attack on the 14-year-old anti-Taliban child rights activist, the Times of India reported.

Malala, who was shot in the head by the Taliban for criticizing the militant group for promoting girls' education, was reportedly responding well to treatment at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, England.

She was flown there Monday to receive specialized medical care after Pakistani doctors removed a bullet lodged in her neck.

The Associated Press cited a statement from the hospital as saying the teenager "could make a good recovery from her injuries."

Adolescent brains are still growing and can adapt to trauma better, the AP wrote, citing an expert from the International Brain Research Foundation.

Meanwhile, in an interview with CNN while visiting Malala's school in the Swat Valley, Pakistan interior minister Rehman Malik said:

"I will give 100 million rupees to whoever arrests him. I also announce the highest award for those who identify him, because we should finish them."

He said Pakistani intelligence agencies were "hunting those involved,'' and also that the Oct. 9 attack was planned in Afghanistan and carried out by four attackers from the neighboring country.

In the face of mounting criticism over the attack, meantime, the Taliban and Al Qaeda mounted a campaign to justify the attack on Malala.

However, CNN wrote:

Most Pakistanis consider the Taliban murderous ideologues, and the young girl's willingness to risk her life to attend school — despite the Taliban's opposition to education for girls — has struck a nerve.

Large rallies supporting Malala have taken place across Pakistan, with protesters condemning the Taliban.

President Asif Ali Zardari said Tuesday that Malala had "done more for Pakistan’s future than any military operation has or will," according to The International News.

Despite this, the Taliban had threatened to again target Malala, Australia's ABC News reported.

More from GlobalPost: In Pakistan, some blame US for Malala attack