UK
07/10/2013 07:13 BST | Updated 23/01/2014 18:58 GMT

Taliban Threaten To Kill Malala Yousafzai For 'Criticising Islam'

A year after Malala Yousafzai was shot in the head for promoting education for girls in Pakistan, a spokesman for the Taliban has threatened her life again and insisted the organisation would “feel proud killing her”.

Shaidullah Shahid, of the Pakistan Taliban issued the death threat two days before the 16-year-old releases her autobiography I Am Malala.

He told ABC News: "Malala Yousafzai targeted and criticized Islam.

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Malala Yousafzai was shot in the head for promoting education for girls in Pakistan

"She was against Islam and we tried to kill her, and if we get a chance again we will definitely try to kill her, and we will feel proud killing her."

Malala, then 15, was shot as she made her way home from school in Pakistan’s northwest Swat Valley.

She was flown to Britain for specialist treatment at Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital after escaping death by inches when the bullet "grazed" her brain on 9 October in 2012.

The threats come during an important week for the teenager – as well as seeing the release of her book, the Nobel committee is considering whether to award her the Nobel Peace Prize.

In November last year, amid claims a fatwa was due to be issued on her, cleric Anjem Choudary said it was “no surprise” the teenager had been targeted and said she should face justice in an Islamic court.

He said: "If someone apostatises like this woman did by allying with the Americans and saying her favourite person is (Barack) Obama and that she does not want the Sharia or hijab and wants to live under a secular state, she has put herself in a very precarious situation.”

Malala was only 11 when she started documenting how difficult it was to get an education: "I dreamt of a country where education would prevail," she wrote.

Her anonymous blog, first published by BBC Urdu, documented Taliban atrocities committed in Pakistan’s Swat Valley and saw the schoolgirl receive international praise.