US women senators seek action against attackers of Malala
From Lalit K Jha
Washington, Oct 20 (PTI) A group of 14 top women senators has written to Pakistan''s Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf to ensure that the perpetrators of the attack on teenage rights activist Malala Yousufzai are brought to justice.
"We believe an attack against Malala represents an attack against all women across the world and must not be tolerated," the group led by Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, wrote in its letter.
It expressed hope that the Pakistan government will continue to work to confront extremism and heinous violence against its own people.
The group also requested Ashraf to "redouble" government''s efforts for safeguarding access of girls to education and provide opportunities to them so that they can contribute to the society.
"As the women of the US Senate, we are writing to express our outrage over the barbaric attack on fourteen-year old Malala Yousafzai and two other girls in a senseless act of violence," the Senators wrote.
"All of us are horrified at the brazen nature of this attack, which was carried out by Taliban militants who targeted Malala simply because she advocated for and pursued an education for herself and other girls," it wrote.
Members also expressed concern over Taliban''s promise to try to kill her again after her recovery.
"We applaud the fact that you and many Pakistani citizens have come out forcefully against these despicable extremists, whose cowardice is matched only by Malala''s unflinching bravery, and we hope that the Government of Pakistan can pursue and prosecute those responsible to the fullest letter of the law," the Senators said.
The attack on Malala is a stark reminder of the "great obstacles" the women face in their pursuit to basic human rights like education, the group noted.
Appreciating Malala, the group said her bravery makes her an "inspiring symbol" for the millions of girls across the globe who are also desperate to get an education.
The group included Senators Barbara Mikulski, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Barbara Boxer, Maria Cantwell, Susan Collins, Kirsten Gillibrand, Kay Hagan, Amy Klobuchar, Mary Landrieu, Claire McCaskill, Patty Murray, Jeanne Shaheen, Olympia Snowe and Debbie Stabenow.