Precarious peace

After boys’ schools reopened, the Taliban lifted restrictions on girls’ primary education, where there was co-education. Girls-only schools were still closed. Yousafzai writes that only 70 pupils out of 700 students who were enrolled attended.On 9 February, Yousafzai’s maid mentioned that the situation in Swat had become “very precarious” and that her husband told her to go back to Attock. Yousafzai goes on to write about it thoughtfully in her blog.
‘People do not leave their homeland on their own free will – only poverty or a lover usually makes you leave so rapidly.
As some of her daily routines begin to return to normal, Yousafzai writes more about her home life, in which one can gain insight into her personality. On 12 February, she mentioned that her teacher for religious education came in the afternoon. In the evening she played with her brothers “amid fighting and arguments”, and she also played computer games.It is known that she owned a laptop.Yousafzai mentions that before the Taliban imposed restrictions on the cable network, she used to watch the Star Plus television channel and her favorite drama was Raja Kee Aye Gee Barat, which she translates as “My dream boy will come to marry me”.

On 15 February, gunshots can be heard in the streets of Mingora, but Yousafzai’s father, Ziauddin, reassures her, saying “don’t be scared – this is firing for peace”. Her father had read in the newspaper that the government and the militants were going to sign a peace deal the next day. Later that night, when the Taliban announced the peace deal on their FM Radio studio, another round of stronger firing started outside. “People believe more in what the militants say rather than the government,” Yousafzai writes in her blog. When they heard the announcement, Yousafzai’s mother and father started crying, and her two younger brothers had tears in their eyes.

Only three days later, their hopes are tested. A Pakistani reporter, Musa Khankhel, had been killed after covering a peace rally led by Sufi Muhammad, father-in-law of local Taliban leader Maulana Fazlulla. That same day, 18 February 2009, Yousafzai apparently gave an interview with Capital Talk, a well-known Pakistani news program.She would return to the same program six months later.On 21 February, Yousafzai got what she had been hoping for. Fazlulla announces on his FM radio station that he was lifting the ban on women’s education, and girls would be allowed to attend school until exams were held on 17 March, but they had to wear burqas.


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