Malala Yousafzai: 'Death Did Not Want to Kill Me' (ABC News)
The Taliban didn't target Malala Yousafzai because of her advocacy of education for girls but because she "attacked Islam," and the group would try to kill her again if they could, the official spokesman for the Pakistan Taliban told ABC News.
"We targeted Malala Yousafzai because she attacked Islam and make a jokes on Islam, if we found her again then we would definitely try to kill her and will feel proud on her death," Shahidullah Shahid told ABC News. "We didn't target her for spreading education in her area, we targeted her for making jokes of Islam, and that was enough reason for attacking her."
Malala was 11 years old when she took a stand against the Taliban, who had issued an edict that all girls' schools should be closed. She began advocating for the right to go to school, writing an anonymous blog for the BBC and appearing in a New York Times documentary.
Her father, Ziauddin Yousafzai, ran a girls' school in the SWAT Valley, and had been targeted for death by the Taliban. And Malala's increasing visibility put her at risk as well.
"I wasn't scared, but I had started making sure the gate was locked at night and asking God what happens when you die," Malala wrote in her autobiography "I Am Malala," excerpted in Sunday's Parade magazine.
When the Taliban struck, on the morning of Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2012, Malala was on a schoolbus in the northwest Pakistani district of Swat.
A gunman got on, asked for the girl by name and then shot her three times.
The bullet narrowly missed Malala's brain and she was taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, England, six days after the attack. She spent nearly three months in the hospital and underwent numerous surgeries.
Now Malala and her family are living in Birmingham and she is back at school.
The Taliban's bullets did nothing to dim her commitment to campaigning for the rights of girls to receive an education.
She spent her 16th birthday giving a speech at the United Nations and has become the youngest person to ever be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.
She has also founded the Malala Fund, a nonprofit organization that advocates for and supports girls education around the world through grants and partner collaborations.
You can see Diane Sawyer's exclusive interview with Malala Yousafzai on ABC's "Good Morning America" at 7 a.m. ET, and on "World News with Diane Sawyer" at 6:30 p.m. ET on Monday Oct. 7. Don't miss a special primetime hour on Malala, "Unbreakable," airing on "20/20" Friday, Oct. 11 at 10 p.m. ET