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Malala receives warm welcome in Pakistan as she returns after 5 years

I have dreamed of returning to Pakistan for five years, says emotional Malala in homecoming speech

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai broke down in tears during an emotional return to her native Pakistan on Thursday for the first time following a Taliban attack in Swat in 2012.

“I have dreamed of returning to Pakistan for the past five years,” said a teary Yousafzai in a homecoming speech on Thursday at a function at Prime Minister House in Islamabad.

Hours after her arrival, Yousafzai met with Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, according to a government statement.

PM Abbasi, who also addressed the gathering after Yousafzai, said he is happy that a daughter of the nation has returned to her homeland.

“You were a 13-year-old girl when you left and now you are the most famous citizen of the country. The entire world gave you honour and respect and Pakistan will [also],” he said.

“It is your home. Now you are not an ordinary citizen, your security is our responsibility.”

Details of the trip have been kept secret “in view of the sensitivity”, officials say.

Pakistani television broadcast video that appeared to show her with her parents at Islamabad’s Benazir Bhutto International Airport under tight security.

Yousafzai returned to Pakistan on a four-day visit late Wednesday night accompanied by her father Ziauddin, Farah Mohamed and Amiro­byn Thompson.

The 20-year-old Oxford University student from Swat has been living in the United Kingdom after surviving a Taliban attack which necessitated her departure abroad for medical treatment.

Malala receives warm welcome in Pakistan

As news broke about Yousafzai’s arrival to the home country, Pakistani politicians, celebrities, journalists and social activists welcomed her on social media.

Cricketer turned opposition leader Imran Khan’s party said Yousafzai’s return was a sign of the defeat of extremism in the country.

Pakistan People’s Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari also welcomed her.

Actor Mahira Khan has welcomed Nobel Peace Prize laureate and social activist Malala Yousafzai, whom she described as “baby girl”.

Welcoming tweets on social media:

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