03/01/2013 14:36 GMT | Updated 03/01/2013 14:55 GMT

Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani Schoolgirl Shot by Taliban, To Undergo Reconstructive Surgery

A 15-year-old girl shot in the head by the Taliban will undergo reconstructive surgery in the next month, her doctors say.

Malala Yousafzai was shot in Pakistan in October and later transferred to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham (QEHB) for further specialist treatment, where she remains.

Doctors are delighted with Malala Yousafzai's recovery after being shot in the head by the Taliban

In a statement released on Thursday, Dr Dave Rosser, medical director, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, said Malala would undergo cranial reconstruction surgery in late January or early February as part of her long-term recovery.

Meanwhile, Malala is now likely to secure permanent residence in the UK after her father was granted a job with the Pakistani consulate in Birmingham.

Ziauddin Yousafzai has been appointed education attache for three years, with the option of an extension for a further two years afterwards.

Both he and his daughter have had threats made against their lives by the Taliban, since the shooting.

Malala's British doctors have been delighted with her ongoing recovery.

When she was shot on 9 October, last year, the bullet entered just above her left eye and ran along her jaw, "grazing" her brain - it was later removed by surgeons in Pakistan before she was flown to the UK.

Dr Rosser said: "Malala has continued to make great progress in her treatment.

"A number of QEHB's multi-specialist doctors have been working alongside colleagues from Birmingham Children's Hospital to treat her.

"The medical team has included clinicians from neurosurgery, imaging, trauma and therapies."

The Pakistani High Commission's decision to appoint Mr Yousafzai to its staff makes it more likely than ever Malala and her family will remain here in Britain, long-term.

Malala Yousafzai with her father Ziauddin in Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital

A statement released by the Pakistani government said it was "pleased to appoint" Mr Yousafzai to head of education at the consulate.

"The tenure of his office shall be initially for three years extendable for a further period of two years," it read.

"The tenure will start from the date he assumes the charge.

"Mr Ziauddin will function as head of the education section under head of the mission."


The appointment is a direct result of Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari visiting Malala and her father in hospital on 8 December.

The statement continued that during that meeting Mr Zardari had assured Mr Yousafzai the Pakistani government would "meet all expenses of Malala's treatment and all the needs of the family while in UK".

"The president had also directed high commissioner Mr Wajid Shamsul Hasan to look after all the needs of Malala, and discuss with Mr Yousafzai a mode for financial sustenance and accommodation of the family.

"In light of that, the present appointment has been made."

The Pakistani government has been paying for all the family's needs while they have been in the UK, while the United Arab Emirates funded the medical airlift which transported Malala to Britain for further treatment.

Malala, from the town of Mingora in the Swat district of Pakistan, was targeted by the Taliban for backing women's rights and their right to an education.

Despite her severe injuries, she has made a good recovery, and was pictured in November sitting up in her bed reading cards and messages from supporters.

Her father, at the time, issued a statement thanking well-wishers for their support and the gifts they had sent his daughter.

He said: "She wants me to tell everyone how grateful she is and is amazed that men, women and children from across the world are interested in her well-being.

"We deeply feel the heart-touching good wishes of the people across the world of all castes, colour and creed.

"I am awfully thankful to all the peace-loving well-wishers who strongly condemn the assassination attempt on Malala, who pray for her health and support the grand cause of peace, education, freedom of thought and freedom of expression."

He described the decision to fly his daughter to hospital in Britain as a "miracle" and vowed that she would "rise again".